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Climate Change in the Caribbean, the case for action


The escalating cost of climate change to the Caribbean region makes a compelling argument for taking early action to adapt to climate change. An analysis of ten years of climate change research in the Caribbean found that sectors that are vital to regional economic and social development, including agriculture and tourism, are especially vulnerable to climate change and its impacts. The findings suggest that well-targeted measures to adapt will be essential to protect the development gains made by the region in recent decades.

The findings come from a new synthesis of Climate and Development Knowledge Network (CDKN)-funded research, and are presented in a ‘knowledge package’ that draws on three CDKN-funded projects. This, the second in a series of four knowledge package releases, identifies key risks and potential adaptation options, and focusses on making the case for climate resilient investment. It also draws together practical tools and methods that decision makers in the region can use to help them adapt.


Key findings from the research include:

  • Climate variability and change are already having severe impacts on key sectors including agriculture and tourism.
  • These impacts are reversing economic growth, exacerbating poverty and undermining the future prosperity of Caribbean countries.
  • CDKN research has provided locally appropriate climate change projections that give fresh insight into the vulnerability of key sectors.
  • Adaptation investment in the agriculture sector is needed to account for projected changes in rainfall and growing seasons, and occurrence of extreme events, especially drought.
  • Adaptation investment in the tourism sector is also needed to build resilience to rising seas, bleached coral reefs, water scarcity and gradual temperature increase.
  • There are many potential adaptation measures that can be applied by governments, businesses, individuals and development partners.
  • Financial support is needed to support adaptation action as high up-front costs are a barrier to local adaptation efforts.
  • Effectively prioritising adaptation options can maximise their value and lead to positive co-benefits for individuals, businesses and society.

Keywords

  • Themes:Climate Change
  • Countries/Regions:Americas

  • Short URL:http://preventionweb.net/go/52226

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