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Département de géographie THE ADAPTATION OF AGRICULTURE AND RURAL COMMUNITIES TO CLIMATIC CHANGE Christopher R. Bryant Géographie, Université de Montréal.

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Presentation on theme: "Département de géographie THE ADAPTATION OF AGRICULTURE AND RURAL COMMUNITIES TO CLIMATIC CHANGE Christopher R. Bryant Géographie, Université de Montréal."— Presentation transcript:

1 Département de géographie THE ADAPTATION OF AGRICULTURE AND RURAL COMMUNITIES TO CLIMATIC CHANGE Christopher R. Bryant Géographie, Université de Montréal Chair, IGU Commission on the Sustainable Development of Rural Systems Ottawa, May

2 Département de géographie Objective & Plan TO PRESENT A PRATICAL AND A RESEARCH-BASED PERSPECTIVE ON ADAPTATION TO CLIMATIC CHANGE THE BASES OF THE REMARKS CLIMATIC CHANGE & THE DECISION-MAKING ENVIRONMENT SIGNIFICANT SOCIO-ECONOMIC DIMENSIONS THE IMPORTANCE FOR FARMERS AND RURAL COMMUNITIES

3 Département de géographie THE BASES OF THE REMARKS BASED ON RESEARCH UNDERTAKEN 1.WITH A RESEARCH GROUP AT THE UNIVERSITÉ DE MONTRÉAL 2.WITH OTHER RESEARCHERS AND ACTORS WORKING IN A CROSS-CANADA NETWORK 3.35 YEARS OF RESEARCH INTO AGRICULTURAL ADAPTATIONS TO OTHER FORMS OF STRESS 4.20 YEARS OF RESEARCH AND INVOLVEMENT IN THE DEVELOPMENT OF COMMUNITIES

4 Département de géographie THE INFORMATION BASE 1. INTERVIEWS WITH FARMERS 2. WORKSHOPS INVOLVING * GROUPS OF FARMERS * OTHER PROFESSIONALS 3. CONSULTATIONS WITH COMMUNITIES

5 Département de géographie CLIMATIC CHANGE & THE DECISION- MAKING ENVIRONMENT THE STUDY OF IMPACTS & ADAPTATIONS CANNOT BE UNDERTAKEN WITHOUT TAKING ACCOUNT OF: · THE HUMAN FACTOR & THE INDIVIDUAL AS DECISION- MAKER · THE REALITY OF MULTIPLE SOURCES OF STRESS · BEING CAREFUL NOT TO MAKE FALSE DISTINCTIONS BETWEEN MITIGATION & ADAPTATION STUDYING ONLY THE BIOPHYSICAL ENVIRONMENT & ITS DYNAMIC IS INADEQUATE BUT THIS IS WHERE CANADA SPENDS MOST OF OUR RESEARCH RESOURCES

6 Département de géographie SIGNIFICANT SOCIO-ECONOMIC DIMENSIONS 1. THE PERCEPTIONS OF DECISION-MAKERS 2. THE ADAPTABILITY OF FARMERS & AGRICULTURAL SYSTEMS: REQUIRES UNDERSTANDING OF : PERSONAL CIRCUMSTANCES OF THE DECISION-MAKER THE CIRCUMSTANCES OF THE FARM: ITS STRUCTURE & BIOPHYSICAL ENVIRONMENT THE GENERIC STRESSES AS WELL AS THOSE THAT ARE SPECIFIC TO EACH PRODUCTION SYSTEM & EACH BROAD REGION

7 Département de géographie CLIMATIC CHANGE – IS IT CONSIDERED IMPORTANT BY FARMERS? 1. VARIABILITY SEEN AS MORE IMPORTANT THAN CHANGES IN AVERAGE CONDITIONS 2. THIS INCLUDES THE FREQUENCY OF EXTREME EVENTS & CONDITIONS 3. BUT THERE ARE OFTEN OTHER SOURCES OF STRESS CONSIDERED MORE PRESSING 4. IMPLYING DECISIONS OFTEN TAKEN IN A SHORT TERM PERSPECTIVE RATHER THAN A LONGER TERM PERSPECTIVE 5. THIS IS ALSO TRUE FOR COMMUNITIES

8 Département de géographie VULNERABILITY – A NEW & MORE IMPORTANT PERSPECTIVE 1. WITH MULTIPLE STRESSES, DECISION-MAKERS TAKE DECISIONS CONTINUOUSLY, SUGGESTING GREATER CONCERN WITH VULNERABILITY OF ACTIVITIES (AGRICULTURE, RURAL) TO ANY FORM OF CHANGE 2. THUS, THE ADAPTATION OF FARMING & RURAL COMMUNITIES TO CLIMATIC CHANGE CAN BE SEEN MORE AS A SECONDARY CONSEQUENCE OF RISK MANAGEMENT

9 Département de géographie SOME CONCLUDING POINTS  1. THE IMPORTANCE OF A HOLISTIC PERSPECTIVE  2. VULNERABILITY : UNDERSTANDING &  REINFORCING THE CAPACITY OF FARMERS &  OTHER RURAL ACTIVITIES TO ADAPT &  BECOME MORE RESILIENT  3. IN ORDER TO MAINTAIN THEIR CONTRIBUTION TO THEIR RURAL ECONOMIES & COMMUNITIES


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