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CC Adaptation Framework: Reminder--Complex Systems

CC Adaptation Framework: Reminder--Complex Systems

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CC Adaptation Framework: Reminder--Complex Systems

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  1. CC Adaptation Framework:Reminder--Complex Systems “A complex system,” wrote NASA Goddard Institute climatologist David Rind in 1999, is literally one in which there are multiple interactions between many different components.”

  2. CC Adaptation: Reminder--Complex Systems Complex systems contain many constituents interacting nonlinearly. The constituents are interdependent. A complex system possesses a structure spanning several scales, each of which has a structure. A complex system is capable of emerging behavior at a particular scale leading to self-organization that changes the structure at that scale. Complexity involves interplay between chaos and non-chaos. Complexity involves interplay between cooperation and competition. --Michael Baranger MIT

  3. CC Adaptation: Reminder--Complex Systems • Local processes may govern transitions of the state of the whole system due to dependence on the initial conditions or what is known intuitively as the “butterfly effect.” • Due to their non-linearity, the effects of these interacting processes across scales, including positive and negative feedbacks, are inherently unpredictable.

  4. Complex Adaptive Systems: The essence of complex adaptive systems is that agents, in this case, human beings, act upon and are affected by the systems and its complex feedbacks and transitions, and can adapt to these changes, including inducing further changes by design. The consequence of such complexity in human worlds is that history matters—really matters because historical problems resulting from the co-evolution of complex human systems with climate and each other have memory and cannot be simply undone.

  5. Climate Change Is Not Alone • Rischard, High Noon, 2002, p. 66 • 20 Global Issues to • Solve in 20 Years • Global Commons (Sharing the Planet) • Global Warming • Biodiversity and Ecosystem Losses • Fisheries Depletion • Deforestation • Water deficits • Maritime safety and pollution • Global Commitments (shared humanity) • Massive step-up in fight against poverty • Peacekeeping, conflict prevention, combating terrorism • Education for all • Global infectious diseases • Digital Divide • Natural Disaster Prevention and mitigation • Global Regulatory Approach, Shared Rules • Reinventing taxation • Biotechnology rules • Global financial architecture • Illegal drugs • Trade, investment, competition rules • Intellectual property rights • E-commerce rules • International labor and migration rules Climate Change shares the stage with many other competing global problems; and is interrelated (inter-linked, as UNEP and Global Environment Facility put it) with many of them.

  6. Source: United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, Climate Change: Impacts, Vulnerabilities and Adaptation in Developing Countries, Bonn, 2007, p. 9 BINARY THINKING… ADAPTIVE RESPONSE

  7. Source: United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, Climate Change: Impacts, Vulnerabilities and Adaptation in Developing Countries, Bonn, 2007, p. 9 ADAPTIVE RESPONSE

  8. GEF: Common Problems, Solution Synergies? Source: Scientific and Advisory Panel, a Conceptual Design Tool for Exploiting Interlinkages between the Focal Areas of the GEF, Global Environment Facility, GEF/C.24/Inf.10 November 10, 2004

  9. Escape from Complexity-GEF Stovepiping Source: Scientific and Advisory Panel, a Conceptual Design Tool for Exploiting Interlinkages between the Focal Areas of the GEF, Global Environment Facility, GEF/C.24/Inf.10 November 10, 2004

  10. Shift to Integrated Mitigation and Adaptation Vulnerability 1: to biophysical impacts

  11. Vulnerability 1: Breaks down in developing countries

  12. V2: Social Risk Assessment: Matrix of climate trends, associated hazards and vulnerability factors Social Risk Assessment Source: Andrew Thow and Mark de Blois , Climate change and human vulnerability: Mapping emerging trends and risk hotspots for humanitarian actors, Summary for decision makers, Maplecroft Report to the UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs with CARE, March 2008, at: http://www.careclimatechange.org/files/DiscussionPaperHumanitarianImplicationsofCC.pdf

  13. Climate Hotspots Source: Andrew Thow and Mark de Blois , Climate change and human vulnerability: Mapping emerging trends and risk hotspots for humanitarian actors, Summary for decision makers, Maplecroft Report to the UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs with CARE, March 2008, at: http://www.careclimatechange.org/files/DiscussionPaperHumanitarianImplicationsofCC.pdf

  14. Combined Social Vulnerability Source: Andrew Thow and Mark de Blois , Climate change and human vulnerability: Mapping emerging trends and risk hotspots for humanitarian actors, Summary for decision makers, Maplecroft Report to the UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs with CARE, March 2008, at: http://www.careclimatechange.org/files/DiscussionPaperHumanitarianImplicationsofCC.pdf

  15. Overlay of Climate Hotspots Source: Andrew Thow and Mark de Blois , Climate change and human vulnerability: Mapping emerging trends and risk hotspots for humanitarian actors, Summary for decision makers, Maplecroft Report to the UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs with CARE, March 2008, at: http://www.careclimatechange.org/files/DiscussionPaperHumanitarianImplicationsofCC.pdf

  16. Down scale: Urban CC Vulnerability Overall: • Delhi, India has the highest average risk score, followed by Dhaka, Bangladesh. • The next two cities are Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam and Dongguan, China. • Delhi’s average score is 3, suggesting that for some of the risk impacts, its risk is low compared to the other cities. • Number two and three cities have no risk impact for which they have the highest risk (a score of 5). • Most of the cities have an average score below 2. ie relatively low exposure on average • But, some of these cities, such as Jaipur, India, and Handan, China, have the highest score on at least one risk impact. • It is difficult to say which city is at greatest risk. • On average, Delhi scores highest and Bandung, Indonesia the lowest. • But, the rankings differ quite considerably based on which risk impact is considered. Caveats: The table also presents average scores across all the risk impacts, applying no weighting of individual factors. Note that application of a cardinal scoring system, in our case applying scores of 0 to 5, as well as no weighting, can introduce distortions. A city with a score of 5 does not necessarily have five times the risk of a city with a score of 1. Not all of the risk impacts will equally affect people. It does not consider how much a city would suffer from climate impacts, nor the past, current, or future adaptive capacity of a city to respond to impacts. Source: Stratus Consulting, Screening Asian Megacities to Estimate Relative Exposure to Climate Change, unpublished report to Rockefeller Foundation, September 11, 2007.

  17. Types of Adaptation • Routine coping • Autonomous adaptation • Reactive vs proactive adaptation • Anticipatory, planned, adaptation • Incremental adaptation

  18. Adaptation Costs No-one has a good estimate of the incremental cost of adaptation, due to inherent uncertainty because: • the range of climate scenarios and related impacts and adaptive costs is great; • current cost estimates (often in the range of 10-50 billion $/year) do not account for autonomous adaptation (which would reduce the cost), nor for disruptive mitigative and adaptive technologies (that may further greatly reduce the cost). • Conversely, these costs do not account for the upgrade of basic infrastructure such as housing that may be necessary for adaptation in poor parts of the world; nor for possible very high costs arising from dangerous climate change. Existing estimates have a high range that do not provide the basis for consensus; and no consensus exists as to the computational basis for burden sharing, or even who should be sharing the costs of adaptation

  19. Table 1: Characteristics of mitigation and adaptation MITIGATION-ADAPTATION SYNERGIES MITIGATION AND ADAPTATION DIFFER Source: Bosello et al, 2007, cited in D. Satterthwaite et al, Building Climate Change Resilience in Urban Areas and among Urban Populations in Low- and Middle-income Nations, prepared for the Rockefeller Foundation’s Global Urban Summit, Innovations for an Urban World, in Bellagio in July 2007 and published as: Adapting to Climate Change in Urban Areas The possibilities and constraints in low- and middle-income nations, Human Settlements Discussion Paper Series, online at: http://www.iied.org/HS/topics/accc.html, p. 51

  20. Adaptation-Mitigation LinkagesSource: R. Klein, S. Huq et al, “Inter-relationships between adaptation and mitigation,” chapter 18, 2007.

  21. Barriers to Integration The IPCC authors called for more research to explore whether bridges can be built between the two categories of activity. The barriers should not be under-estimated. At RMIT University, for example, an effort by a water pollution chemist to engage with building design specialists on whether water-storing structures could be built into walls and contribute to distributed water supply (adaptive measure), reduction in flammability, and to provide thermal mass (mitigation) in the building met with a cool response. As the chemist put it, “the people there were primarily scientific and into gadgets rather than structures...”

  22. Conclusion “Everything changes; all that varies is the rate of change, ranging from infinitesimal to incremental to very fast to abrupt. From a normative viewpoint, what is acceptable change or stable to one person or social entity is overwhelming and objectionable to another. Resistance to change could be adaptive or maladaptive.” • James Rosenau