Adaptation to climate change

Regardless of the effects of mitigation there is a need for increased focus on and attention to adaptation to future impacts of climate change.

Adaptation consists of deliberate actions undertaken to reduce the adverse consequences, as well as to harness any beneficial opportunities. Adaptation is defined as adjustments in human and natural systems, in response to actual or expected climate stimuli or their effects, that moderate harm or exploit beneficial opportunities.

In principle, a range of development activities could help reduce vulnerability to many climate change impacts. In some cases, however, "development as usual" may inadvertently increase vulnerability. Yet, many development policies, plans and projects currently fail to take into account climate variability, let alone climate change.

Published 26.10.2011
Last updated 16.02.2015