African Adaptation to Climate Change from the Viewpoint of Green Revolution II

By Kikuchi, Ryunosuke | Journal of Sustainable Development, May 2012 | Go to article overview

African Adaptation to Climate Change from the Viewpoint of Green Revolution II


Kikuchi, Ryunosuke, Journal of Sustainable Development


Abstract

One fundamental question is how climate change adaptation can be fitted into the development and planning process and an important task lies in understanding the full scope of its implications. Climate change will affect African agriculture in particular. Adaptation pathways for climate change suggest greater net benefits at a local level than a global level; it is therefore considered that adaptation is an attractive instrument in Africa. Resilience-based actions play a major role in adaptation of African agriculture, and these actions basically overlap with the concept of the green revolution (dubbed Green Revolution II). The results from a model run based on this concept indicates that climate change influences technology progress and spread, and that technology progress and spread influence the climatic effects on agricultural output.

Keywords: Africa, agriculture, climate change, job creation, resilience

(ProQuest: ... denotes formulae omitted.)

1. Introduction

Scientific and policy emphasis has focussed on mitigation efforts (i.e. the diminution of greenhouse gas emissions), but planned adaptation has come out as a countermeasure against to the negative effects of climate change (Martens et al., 2009; Schipper et al., 2008). Of the mainstream actions, mitigation is relatively mature in comparison with adaptation, though new instruments continue to be developed and introduced. Mitigation is fundamental to maintain negative effects of climate change as low as possible, and adaptation is also important because the negative effects are inevitable (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [IPCC], 2009). In 2007, the United Nations (UN) Conference on was opened in Bali (Indonesia), and this conference announced the approval of an adaptation financial system to support developing countries that lack the economic, technological and human resources to tackle climate change problems (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change [UNFCCC], 2007); however, climate change adaptation is a multifarious subject that includes a lot of challenges (Schipper et al., 2008). Indeed, one fundamental question is how climate change adaptation can be fitted into the development and planning process. One important task lies in understanding the full scope of its implications (Schipper et al., 2008).

A comprehensive approach is considered necessary to achieve this task. For example, the joint framework between the United Nations Development Programme and the government of Japan has recently launched a programme for combining climate change with chances of country development; this programme also aims at comprehensive approaches to climate change adaptation in Africa (United Nations Development Programme [UNDP], 2009). Focusing on African agriculture, this manuscript attempts to paint a picture that will aid understanding of the link between strategic choice and agriculture development in the current climate change measures.

Roughly speaking, a third of the labor force is unemployed and/or lives below the poverty level in the world (International Labour Organization [ILO], 2001; 2006). Agriculture makes up about 15% gross domestic product (GDP) and about 30% employment in Africa (ILO, 2001), so agricultural development is essential to improve crop production as well as an employment rate and an income amount in African countries. However, poor formers will be subject to the climate change impacts because they depend on agriculture and have low ability to adapt (World Bank, 2008).

2. Scale and Region

The success of global mitigation initiatives to date is questionable and the efficiency of such action is also debatable (cf. Martens et al., 2009). More integrated climate strategies will be required to incorporate a wider range of mitigation, adaptation and vulnerability considerations (Klein et al., 2007; Wilbanks & Sathaye, 2007).

The FAIR model is an interactive, decision-support tool for analysing environmental and cost implications of climate mitigation regimes for future commitments for reducing emissions of greenhouse gases (den Elzen & Lucas, 2005). …

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