Climate resilience and adaptation
Improving the resilience of countries, companies and communities through adaptation to the current and future climate is absolutely critical to sustainable economic growth and development across the world. The impacts of climate change through, for example, sea level rise and intensification of many extreme weather events, are already undermining sustainable development, particularly in vulnerable and exposed poor countries. Even if the world is successful in meeting the goal of the Paris Agreement to limit the rise in global mean surface temperature to well below 2°C, and ideally 1.5oC, the world will be subject to growing impacts of climate change for many decades to come. Only a massive step change in the pace of adaptation and transformational increases in resilience will safeguard further rises in living standards, prosperity and well-being.
Climate adaptation is a cross-cutting research theme at GRI, with several projects embedded in GRI’s research themes, particularly the Sustainable Development, Governance and Legislation and Sustainable Finance themes.
Our geographic focus spans from the UK to developing countries and we work closely with decision makers, industry and civil society to support climate resilience and climate adaptation.
Key adaptation and resilience focus areas at GRI
Adaptation and climate resilience in the UK
- GRI is a regular contributor to the UK’s Climate Change Risk Assessment. For the current round of the third risk assessment, Swenja Surminski is leading the chapter on climate risks to business and industry, following on from her previous paper, and Declan Conway is contributing to te chapter on international risks, following on from the previous report.
- UK Wine sector: Climate resilience in the UK wine sector – CREWS-UK
- UK flood resilience, urban decision making and financial instruments: Zurich Flood Resilience Alliance (ZFRA)
Role of insurance in supporting climate resilience
- Evaluating the Resilience Impact of Climate Insurance (ERICI)
- Zurich Flood Resilience Alliance (ZFRA)
- Where next for sustainable insurance?
Adaptation, climate resilience and sustainable development
- The economic impact of El Niño-related floods and drought on small and medium enterprises in Botswana, Kenya and Zambia
- Pathways to resilience in semi-arid economies (PRISE)
- Uncertainty reduction in models for understanding development (UMFULA)
- Evaluating the Resilience Impact of Climate Insurance (ERICI)
- The Development Corridor Partnership
- Triple Dividend of Resilience
Commentaries and publications
This global review of adaptation laws and policies has been undertaken to understand how adaptation to climate change is governed at the national level. It highlights the common areas of focus and also apparent gaps in these laws and policies, making recommendations for policymakers and further research. read more »
Submission to the Environment Agency’s consultation on the Draft National Flood and Coastal Erosion Risk Management Strategy for England
This submission was made to the Environment Agency’s consultation on its draft strategy for flood and coastal risk management in England, and draws on the Grantham Research Institute’s work and expertise over many years in this area. read more »
Addressing the impacts of climate change through an effective Warsaw International Mechanism on Loss and Damage
This paper is a submission to the second review of the Warsaw International Mechanism (WIM) on Loss and Damage under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, which will take place at COP25 in December. The submission looks at the Loss and Damage policy debate, how it relates to other international frameworks and efforts in the areas of mitigation, adaptation, disaster risk reduction and sustainable development, and identifies how the WIM can be most effective. read more »
This paper summarises the Institute’s submission to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs’ call for evidence on policy direction to prepare the UK for flooding and coastal erosion, drawing on a decade of work by the Grantham Research Institute with the insurance industry and policymakers addressing issues around climate change and adaptation. read more »
The current and future climate of central and southern Africa: What we have learnt and what it means for decision-making in Malawi and Tanzania
This brief summarises the main lessons from four years of the UMFULA project – led by the Grantham Research Institute, UMFULA has addressed questions of climate science, climate impacts and decision-making processes for adaptation in central and southern Africa, with focuses on Malawi and Tanzania. read more »
The major disruption to urban water and hydroelectricity supplies caused by the conditions accompanying the 2015/16 El Niño in Southern Africa show that governments and businesses need to be more prepared for climatic extremes, argue the authors of this commentary. read more »
Can subjective resilience indicators predict future food security? Evidence from three communities in rural Kyrgyzstan
This paper is the first to quantitatively compare the power of subjective and objective resilience measures to predict future wellbeing in the face of socio-environmental shocks and stressors. It uses data from rural Kyrgyzstan. read more »
The policy brief outlines the key governance challenges Tanzania faces in implementing its climate policies, describes the drivers of and barriers to climate-relevant policy processes, and concludes with policy recommendations. read more »
Climate change adaptation among female-led micro, small and medium enterprises in semi-arid areas: a case study from Kenya
This research suggests that female-led MSMEs in Narok, Kenya, may face both additional exposure to climate risk compared with men, and additional barriers to adapting to that risk. read more »
Resilient, but from whose perspective? Like-for-like comparison of objective and subjective evaluations of resilience
Little has been known to date about how objective and subjective modes of evaluating resilience compare. This paper addresses this gap, introducing a new method of subjective evaluation through household surveys in Uganda. The findings are relevant to evaluation toolkit design. read more »
Emissions Trading Systems (ETSs) with fixed caps lack provisions to address systematic imbalances in the supply and demand of permits in response to economic shocks. This paper proposes a new mechanism which adjusts the allocation of permits based on the current bank of permits to create a dynamic system of permit allocation. read more »
While a growing proportion of global food consumption is obtained through international trade, there is an ongoing debate on whether this increased reliance on trade benefits or hinders food security, and specifically, the ability of global food systems to absorb shocks due to local or regional losses of production. This paper introduces a model that simulates the short-term response to a food supply shock originating in a single country.
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Spatially diverse trends in population growth, climate change, industrialization, urbanization and economic development are expected to change future food supply and demand. These changes may affect the suitability of land … read more »
Reference Surminski, S. October 2013. Private-sector adaptation to climate risk. Nature Climate Change, v.3, pp.943-945.
The first set of reports from public bodies setting out what they are doing to adapt to the impacts of climate change on the UK was published by the Department for … read more »