This chapter serves as an introduction to the issues associated with agriculture and climate change and provides context for the other chapters in the volume. It describes how, although a wide range of ideas and perspectives are presented in the volume, several common themes emerge. Climate change and agriculture are part of a complex web of science, law and policy, which extends from the global scale to the smallholder. Agriculture is a significant contributor to climate change and thus should be considered part of the solution, as well as part of the problem. Consequently changes to agricultural systems that reduce GHG emissions, sequester carbon or put land to use in ways that reduce overall atmospheric carbon can be important tools for climate change mitigation. Conversely agriculture in general and food security in particular, will suffer serious adverse impacts from climate change even with mitigation measures in place. Accordingly agricultural adaptation strategies targeted at agricultural production will be critical to ensuring food security in the future. Because of the pervasive complexity and uncertainty regarding climate change impacts on agriculture, it will be important to ensure that any adaptation efforts employ systems approaches aimed at building resiliency in agricultural production as well as in the entire agricultural value chain. In many cases resilient agricultural systems are comprised of both mitigation and adaptive elements. Thus building more resilient systems will have benefits in reducing the adverse effects of climate change as well as adapting to the inevitable effects that will occur. Although climate change will result in adverse impacts throughout the globe, disproportionate impacts will be felt by the poorest and most vulnerable populations. Regions of the developing world face the greatest threats to food security. Mitigation and adaptation strategies, including regulatory and financial policies must include measures to ensure greater food security for poor and vulnerable populations. This volume provides a number of proposals for climate change mitigation and adaptation aimed at providing food security for a growing population in an era of dramatic changes to the global environment. Key Words: food security, climate change, agriculture, resilience, adaptation, mitigation
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Elizabeth Ferris and Jonas Bergmann
This article explores alternative ways that legal and normative frameworks can be used to uphold the rights of those who are displaced internally or across borders in the context of anthropogenic climate change. In particular, we argue that more efforts should be focused on developing soft law rather than trying to fit those displaced because of the effects of climate change into existing legal frameworks. The present hard law system governing the movement of people is not equipped to handle the complexities of population movements resulting from the effects of climate change, and an adequate transformation of these often static legal regimes is improbable. By contrast, soft law offers a number of advantages particularly well suited to the characteristics of those who move because of the effects of climate change and who currently fall into the gaps between protection frameworks. On the downside, soft law norms are not binding and the multiplicity of such initiatives may contribute to a fragmentation of protection systems, resources and attention. Therefore, the present article concludes by arguing for a two-track approach in which both soft and hard law contributes to the protection of those displaced in the context of climate change. On the one hand, in order to address some of the current protection gaps, existing, emergent and new soft law needs to be used and implemented more thoroughly. At the same time, ways forward also include encouraging the more effective and dynamic implementation of hard law, especially through regionalization, complementary protection and the deployment of some features of emerging climate change regimes.