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What is climate change adaptation?

Although there are those who still dare to deny it, climate change is a reality that is already wreaking havoc around the world, through events such as the melting of the Arctic ice or the development of all kinds of extreme weather events.

On November 6, the world community will gather in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, for the COP27 climate conference. The COP, or ‘Conference of the Parties, is the key decision-making forum of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and address climate change and its impacts.

The IPCC uses five possible scenarios to estimate how badly global warming will affect the planet, ranging from the global warming limit of 1.5°C to the worst case where the average global temperature is 4.4°C. Highest C for 2100.

Whichever scenario plays out, global warming will continue for at least several decades, along with rising sea levels, says the IPCC.

What is adaptation to climate change?

Reducing greenhouse gas emissions can slow the rate of global warming; this is known as mitigation. The IPCC says greenhouse gas emissions must peak by 2025 and then decline rapidly if further warming is to be limited.

Climate change is already a reality: in India, average temperatures are rising, natural water resources are shrinking and sea levels are rising. Even if we manage to reduce the emissions that cause climate change, and thus avoid its worst consequences, these trends will continue in the coming decades due to the inertia of the climate system.

Climate change adaptation measures aim to limit impacts, reduce vulnerabilities and increase the resilience of human and natural systems to climate change, including biodiversity, forests, coasts, cities, the agricultural sector, industry, etc.

Adaptation solutions take many shapes and forms, depending on the unique context of a community, company, organization, country or region. There is no single solution that can encompass everything from building flood defences, establishing early warning systems for cyclones and switching to drought-resistant crops, to redesigning communication systems, business operations and policies. governmental. Many nations and communities are already taking steps to build resilient societies and economies, but considerably more action and ambition will be needed to cost-effectively manage risks, both now and in the future.

What have countries agreed to do?

All parties to the Paris Agreement have committed to strengthening the global response to climate change by increasing everyone’s capacity to adapt and build resilience and reduce vulnerability. You can get more information here.

At COP26, countries adopted the Glasgow Climate Pact, which calls for funding to be doubled to help developing countries adapt to the effects of climate change and build resilience.

Since 2011, under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, several countries have developed national adaptation plans. Check if your country has one and what it consists of. You can also see updates on how countries are developing plans as part of national development strategies.

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