Stream: Mitigation of and Adaption to Climate Change


C1. Climate change and agriculture - modelling impacts, exploring adaptation options, identifying conflicts
Annelie Holzkaemper, Robert Finger, Juerg Fuhrer

What are the impacts of climate change on agriculture? How can farmers adapt their management? Could management adaptations induce conflicts with other landscape functions?

Agriculture utilizes a large proportion of the planet's land surface and provides, besides food and fibre production, many other important functions and services such as soil conservation, nutrient cycling, biodiversity, carbon sequestration, or recreation. Climate change is likely to affect these functions in different ways. Yield potentials could increase with increasing temperatures, but may be limited by water availability especially during the summer months. Farmers will have to adapt their land use and management to cope with climate change under variable economic development and political constraints. Such adaptation measures could create synergies, but could also induce new conflicts with environmental objectives and thus need to be evaluated carefully. For example, conservation tillage combined with direct sowing could reduce the risk of erosion while at the same time being a profitable adaptation to drought through improved soil water retention. Conversely, expanding irrigation could induce conflicts with other water users and with environmental targets such as surface water quality and aquatic biodiversity as the dilution of pollutants is reduced with declining water levels due to water extraction, and oxygen solubility declines with increasing temperatures. Additional pressure on water quality could result from increased runoff of nutrients, sediments and pesticides from agricultural fields. This session focuses on modelling approaches to assess impacts of climate change on agroecosystems and their functions and to explore implications of adaptation measures.


  • Assessment of climate change impacts on agroecosystems and related uncertainties
  • Exploration of strategies to adapt agriculture to climate change
  • Investigation of trade-offs and synergies related to adaptation measures in land management.

Link to full papers


C2. Modelling the effectiveness and efficiency of REDD+
Daniel Mueller, Zhanli Sun

Projects aimed at reducing emission from deforestation and forest degradation or the enhancement of forest carbon stocks (REDD+) are promising and cost-effective pathways to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions in developing countries. REDD+ activities provide incentive payments that aim to reduce the pressure on forest resources and related carbon stocks. But to date it is unclear how REDD+ mechanisms can best deliver beneficial outcomes with regard to understanding and monitoring the impact on climate effectiveness, cost efficiency, equity and co-benefits. Knowledge of the decision-making processes that lead to changes in land use is prerequisite to understand the likely impacts of REDD+ payments on the drivers of forest carbon emissions and to provide reasonable estimates of future emission levels. Modelling approaches can generate a better understanding of land-use decision making and provide crucial insights into the setting of historic and future baselines, the monitoring of leakage, the verification of additionality, and the assessment of likely co-benefits of REDD+.

We welcome interdisciplinary contributions from a variety of modelling disciplines including, but not limited to, agent-based Modelling, machine learning approaches, statistical analysis, and participatory simulations. All applications are supposed to target existing or prospective REDD+ schemes and to investigate forest and land use transitions with integrated human-environment data. We expect participants to include assessments of past developments and the likely future trajectories in light of the incentive payments. The session will thus bring together a number of state-of-the-art applications from diverse geographic settings that help better understanding the likely impacts of REDD+ payments on the drivers of forest carbon emissions and to provide reasonable estimates of future emission levels.

Link to full papers


C3. Data sets and model components for an integrative assessment of climate strategies
Georgii Alexandrov, Gianni Bellocchi, Mark Borsuk, Francois Gillet, Dominik Reusser

Many countries (and even multinational corporations) have adopted strategies to combat climate change. The strategies are normally categorized into the strategies for mitigation of climate change and the strategies for adaptation to climate change. The mitigation strategies are to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and to enhance carbon sinks. The adaptation strategies are to protect agriculture, forestry, biodiversity, water resources, and transportation infrastructure from the risks associated with climate change.

The purpose of this session is to review data sets and model components that could be used in an integrative assement of either mitigation or adaptation strategies.

Link to full papers