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Edited by K. N. Ninan and Makoto Inoue

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Konar Mutafoglu, Patrick ten Brink, Sabrina Dekker, Jamie Woollard and Jean-Pierre Schweitzer

Nature plays an important role in addressing the risks posed by climate change. In this chapter, the authors explore nature’s contribution to improving micro-climatic conditions in cities and mitigating urban heat stress, thereby helping cities become climate resilient. Green infrastructure, such as parks and tree-lined streets, can contribute to climate resilience and the health of urban populations by reducing heat stress, as well as hospitalisations and mortality. Today, with more than half of the global population urbanised, population densities and the heat island effect amplify heat-related risks in cities and necessitate appropriate solutions. The chapter presents a range of examples illustrating the benefits of nature, building mainly on insights from Europe. It also details how stakeholders collaborate to invest in urban and suburban green infrastructure and use a variety of tools, measures, processes and financing sources. The chapter then outlines a road map for moving forward.

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Architesh Panda, Upasna Sharma, K.N. Ninan and Anthony Patt

It is important to identify the factors influencing adaptive capacity among households within a community, as doing so will enable effective targeting of government interventions to address the risks posed by climate change. In this chapter the authors study such factors using household survey data collected from a drought prone region of Orissa, India. In the survey respondents were asked about the adaptations that they had engaged in to deal with the risk of drought, as well as a number of indicators for adaptive capacity taken from the literature. The study found many indicators to correlate with one or more adaptations taken. However, many of these indicators, while increasing the likelihood that one adaptation would be taken, also decreased the likelihood that another would be taken, and hence were not unambiguous determinants of greater adaptive capacity in general. Access to crop insurance was found to be particularly effective: it correlated with an increased likelihood of engaging in two separate yield-raising adaptations. The results suggest that further attention to crop insurance may be warranted, as well as further research to determine if the other indicators may be effective in other contextual settings.

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Craig Johnson, Iftekharul Haque, Yvonne Su and Kristy May

Urban areas will face increased risks as a result of climate change such as heat stress, storms and extreme precipitation, inland and coastal flooding, air pollution, water scarcity, sea-level rise, storm surges, and so on. By the year 2050 about 66% of the world’s population will reside in urban areas; much of the projected increase will take place in Asia and Africa. Recent studies confirm that the impacts of climate change are already being seen and felt in major Asian cities. To combat the impacts of climate change, Asian city governance needs to mainstream climate change resilient policies into urban planning. This chapter explores the challenge of enhancing climate resilience in two of the world’s most vulnerable coastal city regions – Dhaka, Bangladesh and Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. The chapter reviews the policies and governance structures of these cities, comparing the extent to which national and municipal governments could implement measures aimed at building climate resilience at the urban scale.

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Irina Arakelyan, Anita Wreford and Dominic Moran

Agriculture is highly exposed to climate change, and much of the international climate discourse has focused on the sector’s vulnerability, resilience and adaptive capacity for given projected climate scenarios. The sector also has a recognized role in terms of climate change mitigation. The agricultural sector accounts for approximately a third of total global anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions, including emissions from land use change and deforestation. These climate challenges overlap a growing concern about global food security, which highlights additional stressors including demographic changes, natural resource scarcity, and economic convergence in consumption preferences, particularly livestock products. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations estimates that, to meet the demands of a larger population (expected to cross 9 billion by 2050), food supply will need to grow by 60 per cent. The term ‘climate smart agriculture’ (CSA) has been coined to describe practices, systems and institutional arrangements that balance the trade-offs inherent in meeting these objectives. Climate smart agriculture has become a focus of research in developed and developing countries. In this chapter, the authors provide a critical appraisal of the concept of CSA and then review the experiences in implementing CSA in a cross-section of countries in Africa. The chapter discusses the policies and institutional support needed to achieve climate smart agriculture, as well as highlights some of the concerns regarding CSA, especially its sustainability and distributional consequences.

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Lint Barrage

Over the past 25 years, a growing number of countries have adopted policies that place a price on the emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases. Regardless of whether such carbon pricing is implemented through taxes or emissions trading schemes (ETS), these policies can raise substantial amounts of public funds. How should the revenues raised by carbon pricing policies be managed? This chapter surveys both the economic models and the policy approaches that have been used to address this question from the perspectives of economic efficiency, equity, and political feasibility. First, from an efficiency-maximizing perspective, public finance models typically find that capital income tax reductions will be the optimal use of carbon revenues. Recycling the revenues through labor income tax cuts ranks second, whereas rebating the revenues directly to households as lump-sum payments entails the largest efficiency costs. In contrast, based on equity considerations, lump-sum rebates can be preferable to labor tax reductions in addressing the regressivity of carbon prices. In contrast, an ETS with free permits and corporate income tax cuts is likely the most regressive option, but will compensate industries and thus achieve political feasibility at the lowest cost.

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Robert Costanza

The atmosphere is a community asset that belongs to all people. The problem is that it is treated as an open access resource – anyone can emit carbon dioxide into the atmosphere with no consequences to themselves – but huge cumulative consequences to the climate and the global community. Many agree that charging companies and individuals for the damages their emissions cause, for example a comprehensive carbon tax or cap/auction/dividend/trade system, would drastically cut emissions. However, despite some interesting regional experiments, implementing this kind of system via international negotiations at the global scale has proven close to impossible. A few critical governments, influenced too much by fossil fuel interests, have been blocking binding commitments and effective economic instruments. In this chapter, the author argues that global civil society can change this if it claims property rights over the atmosphere. By asserting that all people collectively own the sky, legal institutions surrounding property can be used to protect our collective rights, charge for damages to the asset and provide rewards for improving the asset. This idea has been proposed by Peter Barnes and others. The public trust doctrine is a powerful emerging legal principle that supports this idea. The doctrine holds that certain natural resources are to be held in trust as assets to serve the public good. It is the government’s responsibility as trustee to protect these assets from harm and maintain them for the public’s use. Under this doctrine, the government cannot give away or sell off these public assets to private parties. The public trust doctrine has been used in many countries in the past to protect water bodies, shorelines, fresh water, wildlife and other resources.

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U. Rashid Sumaila, William W.L. Cheung, Philippe M. Cury and Travis Tai

In this chapter the authors review current knowledge on the potential impacts of climate change on marine ecosystems and the millions of people worldwide who depend on them. The authors highlight the fact that different parts of the world would be impacted differently and, therefore, climate will impact people in different regions differently. They then provide a number of policy recommendations to help prepare society for the changes that we are already seeing and those yet to come. To build climate resilient marine ecosystems and global fisheries, the authors highlight the need to transform their management by increasing incentives for community engagement, deploy marine protected areas, and promote sustainability enhancing public policies by avoiding harmful ones such as the provision of capacity enhancing fisheries subsidies.

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Ramón Pichs-Madruga

Small island developing states (SIDS) are most vulnerable to climate change. It is due to the insistence of SIDS that the Paris Climate Agreement concluded in December 2015 also set a desirable target of limiting temperature rises to 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels. This chapter discusses the economic, social and environmental challenges and options for SIDS to address the risks posed by climate change, especially rising sea levels, extreme weather events, and degradation of marine ecosystems, with their consequent impacts on lives and livelihoods in the SIDS. Mitigation and adaptation measures, improving the sustainability of marine ecosystems and marine fisheries, disaster risk reduction and community-based approaches to development are critical to enhance climate resilience and sustainable development in SIDS.

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Vivek Shandas, Anandi van Diepen, Jackson Voelkel and Meenakshi Rao

In this chapter the authors argue for using coproduction as a model for urban resilience, based on a recent collaborative project between planners and researchers. They review the findings of four collaborative workshops of neighborhood-scale climate adaptation, using spatial and statistical analyses, as well as posit the conceptual framework underlying the project’s collaborative rationality. Their assessment is from two perspectives: (1) an academic, phenomenological lens; and (2) a pragmatic lens. They argue that, in order to understand resilience, we must first ask the question “Resilience to what and for whom?” To that end, they consider what characterizes those communities that are affected by two major urban environmental hazards, namely air pollution and urban heat, in the city of Portland, Oregon in the Pacific Northwest of the United States. Empirically, the authors explore neighborhood-level exposure to air pollution and extreme heat, as well as these spatially defined communities’ physiological sensitivity to the two hazards, and their social capacity to adapt to them. Phenomenologically, the authors argue that this collaboration is an effort in coproduction, encapsulating cooperation between scientific experts and governmental authorities in the production of knowledge toward a socially determined goal in the public interest.