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Climate Change


The Tilling of Land in a Changing Climate: Panel Data Evidence from the Nile Basin of Ethiopia

Empirical studies point to reduced tillage as a means to increase yields and reverse land degradation. A relatively neglected avenue of research concerns why farmers increase tillage frequencies. Using household plot–level panel data from the Nile Basin of Ethiopia, this article applies a random effects ordered probit endogenous switching regression model to empirically investigate the impact of weather events and other conditioning factors on farmers’ choice of tillage intensity and the effect of changing tillage frequencies on differences in farm returns.


Response to climate risks among smallholder farmers in Malawi: A multivariate probit assessment of the role of information, household demographics, and farm characteristics

Why do many smallholder farmers fail to adopt what appear to be relatively simple agronomic or management practices which can help them cope with climate-induced stressors? Using household and plot level data collected in 2011, we implement a multivariate probit model to assess the determinants of farmer adaptation behavior to climatic risks and the relative contribution of information, credit and education on the probability of adopting specific practices in response to adverse changes in weather patterns.


Assessing the evidence of climate variability in the northern part of Ethiopia

In semi-arid highlands of northern Ethiopia, episodes of droughts of varying severity and duration occur. The occurrence of these droughts is associated mainly with the seasonal rainfall variability. This study attempts to investigate the temporal and spatial variability of climate parameters, particularly rainfall and temperature for the period 1954-2008. Standardized rainfall anomaly was used to examine the temporal characteristics of climate variability and determine the prevalence of droughts.


Climate change vulnerability in Ethiopia: disaggregation of Tigray Region

Climate change and variability severely affect rural livelihoods and agricultural productivity, yet they are causes of stress vulnerable rural households have to cope with. This paper investigated farming communities’ vulnerability to climate change and climate variability across 34 agricultural-based districts in Tigray, northern Ethiopia. It considered 24 biophysical and socio-economic indicators to reflect the three components of climate change vulnerability: exposure, sensitivity and adaptive capacity.


Farm Level Adaptation to Climate Change: The Case of Farmer’s in the Ethiopian Highlands

 In Ethiopia, climate change and associated risks are expected to have serious consequences for agriculture and food security. This in turn will seriously impact on the welfare of the people, particularly the rural farmers whose main livelihood depends on rain-fed agriculture. The level of impacts will mainly depend on the awareness and the level of adaptation in response to the changing climate.


Does Adoption of multiple climate-smart practices improve farmers’ climate resilience? Empirical evidence from the Nile basin of Ethiopia

There is a paucity of information on conditioning factors that hinder or promote adoption of multiple climate-smart practices and on the synergies among such practices in increasing household resilience by improving agricultural income. This study analyzes how heat, rainfall, and rainfall variability affect farmers’ choices of a portfolio of potential climate smart practices — agricultural water management, improved crop seeds, and fertilizer — and the impact of these practices on farm income in the Nile Basin of Ethiopia.


The Impact of Climate Change on Food Calorie Production and Nutritional Poverty: Evidence from Kenya

We investigate the effects of climate variables on food and nutrition security and the probability of a household being food and nutrition insecure. Panel data methods from three waves of the Tegemeo Institute Household survey data (2004, 2007, and 2010) are used. Climate change is measured by long-term averages of temperature and rainfall, all measured at the peak precipitation month and extreme values of the Standardised Precipitation-Evapotranspiration Index (SPEI).


Migration as an Adaptation Strategy to Weather Variability: An Instrumental Variables Probit Analysis

There is solid scienti c evidence predicting that a large part of the developing world will su er a greater incidence of extreme weather events, which may increase the incidence of displacement migration. We draw on the new economics of migration to model migration decisions of smallholder and rain-dependent farm households in rural Ethiopia and investigate both the ex-ante and ex-post impacts of climate variables. Using detailed household survey panel data matched with rainfall data, we show that weather variability - measured by the coecient of


In search of double dividends from climate change interventions: evidence from forest conservation and household energy transitions. Stockholm: Expert Group for Aid Studies (EBA).

Climate change is the greatest challenge facing humanity, and we are only starting to address it. Climate change scenarios indicate that poor people in developing countries will be particularly negatively affected, e.g. by increased temperature reducing their harvests or flooding due to sea-level rise and extreme weather events. There are also expectations that greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions can be costefficiently reduced in developing countries through for example reduced deforestation or improved stoves.


Evaluating the cost-effectiveness of ecosystem-based adaptation: Kamiesberg wetlands case study

Ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA) is increasingly being promoted as a cost-effective means of adaptation to climate change. However, in spite of considerable international press, there is still little evidence to substantiate this claim. This study proposes a method through which the cost-effectiveness of EbA strategies can be evaluated against alternative adaptation options, and contributes to South African literature on the subject. The potential cost-effectiveness of wetland restoration is assessed as a means of


Impacts of weather variations on rice yields in China based on province-level data

Using province-level yield data and daily weather data from 1980 to 2012, we investigated the responses of early rice, middle-season rice, and late rice yields to weather variations in China. In contrast to prior studies that found negative impacts of elevated daily minimum temperature (Tmin) on rice yield in tropical and subtropical regions, we discovered that rising Tmin increased early and late rice yields in China, with the positive temperature effects varying by rice-growth stage.


Advancing Comparative Climate Change Politics: Theory and Method

Central to this special issue is the notion that the methods and conceptual tools of comparative politics can improve our understanding of global climate change politics. Building on recent advancements in the field of comparative environmental politics, the special issues offers a more comprehensive treatment of climate change politics in developed countries, emerging economies and least developed countries.


Does Adoption of Multiple Climate-Smart Practices Improve Farmers’ Climate Resilience? Empirical Evidence from the Nile Basin of Ethiopia

There is a paucity of information on the conditions under which multiple climate-smart practices are adopted and on the synergies among such practices in increasing household resilience by improving agricultural income. This study analyzes how heat, rainfall, and rainfall variability affect farmers’ choices of a portfolio of potential climate-smart practices – agricultural water management, improved crop seeds and fertilizer – and the impact of these practices on farm income in the Nile Basin of Ethiopia.


Mapping Vulnerability to Climate Change of the Farming Sector in the Nile Basin of Ethiopia A Micro-level Perspective

This paper analyzes vulnerability to climate change of the farming sector in the Nile Basin of Ethiopia across different agro-ecological zones. We construct composite vulnerability indices, which integrate both the bio-physical conditions of the farming regions and the socio-economic conditions of the farm households to investigate overall vulnerability as well as adaptive capacity, exposure and sensitivity.


The Green Paradox and Interjurisdictional Competition across Space and Time

Abstract: This paper demonstrates that unintended effects of climate policies (Green Paradox effects) also arise in general equilibrium when countries compete for mobile factors of production (capital and resources/energy). Second, it shows that countries have a rationale to use strictly positive source-based capital taxes to slow down resource extraction. Notably, this result comes about in the absence of any revenue requirements by the government, and independently of the elasticity of substitution between capital and resources in production.


The Political Economy of Mitigation and Adaptation

Abstract: In this paper, we acknowledge that the mitigation of and adaptation to climate change have differential fiscal impacts. Whereas mitigation typically raises fiscal revenues, adaptation is costly to the taxpayer and to a greater extent the more distortionary the tax system is. In an OLG model with majority voting, we analyze how the choices of mitigation and adaptation are distorted under a lump-sum and a distortionary income tax regime.


Public disclosure for carbon abatement: African decision-makers in a PROPER public good experiment

A linear public good experiment adopted from Holt and Laury [1997. Classroom games: Voluntary provision of a public good. Journal of Economic Perspectives, 11(4), 209–215.] has been employed to investigate strategic behaviour in pollution abatement among African climate decision-makers. The experiment consisted of three groups, of which groups 2 and 3 received one and two treatments, respectively.


Water Variability and the Economic Impacts on Small-Scale Farmers. A Farm Risk-Based Integrated Modelling Approach

Strengthening the planning of hydrological resources to optimize the use ofwater in agriculture is a key adaptation measure of the Chilean agricultural sector to cope with future climate change. To address this challenge, decision-makers call for tools capable of representing farmers’ behaviours under the likely stresses generated by future climate conditions. In this context, of special concern are the effects of water variability on small-scale farmers, who commonly operate with narrow profit margins and who lack access to financial resources and technological knowledge.


Temperature and Industrial Output: Micro-level Evidence from China

We pair a county-level panel of annual industrial output with a fine-scale daily weather dataset to  estimate the responses of industrial output to temperature changes in China. We have three primary findings. First, industrial output is nonlinear in temperature changes. With seasonal average temperatures as temperature variables, industrial output increases by 0.7–1.0% for each 1°C increase in average spring temperature, and falls by 1.3–2.3% for each 1°C increase in average summer temperature.


Small-holder Farming, Food Security and Climate Change in South Africa: Male-Female and Urban-Rural Differences

With ongoing climate change, food insecurity is likely to become more widespread in most small-holder and subsistence farm households in sub-Saharan Africa. However, the existence and extent of gendered food (in)security remains unclear. This study extends existing knowledge by assessing gender inequality in food (in)security amongst small-holder farm households in urban and rural areas of South Africa. To do so, we use the gender of the head of household in a treatment effects framework.


Effects of climate change on agricultural households’ welfare in Kenya

Natural and artificial ecosystems (such as agricultural ecosystems), confer benefits in the form of provisioning, regulatory, cultural and habitat goods and services to nations and humanity as a whole. Degradation of ecosystems through different threats and drivers compromises their ability of provide these goods and services. In Kenya, just like many African countries, climate change and variability is a driver affecting weather patterns and causing seasonal shifts.


Effects of climate change on agricultural households’ welfare in Kenya

Natural and artificial ecosystems (such as agricultural ecosystems), confer benefits in the form of provisioning, regulatory, cultural and habitat goods and services to nations and humanity as a whole. Degradation of ecosystems through different threats and drivers compromises their ability of provide these goods and services. In Kenya, just like many African countries, climate change and variability is a driver affecting weather patterns and causing seasonal shifts.


Climate Change and Food Security in Kenya Does Climate Change Affect Food Insecurity in Kenya?

The research analyzes the impact of climate change (including increased variability and less predictability of temperature and rainfall) on food security in Kenya. The study is based on county-level data, collected over time, for yields of four major crops (maize, beans, sorghum and millet), four climate variables (precipitation, temperature, runoff and total cloud cover), population, soil and agro-ecological zones data spanning over three decades. The paper estimates models of main food crop yields and also of the probability of a county being food insecure.


Climate change and South Africa’s commercial farms: an assessment of impacts on specialised horticulture, crop, livestock and mixed farming systems

South Africa, a main food exporter in SADC, is characterised by a dual agricultural economy consisting of a well-developed commercial sector and smallholder, often subsistence, farming. Using the Ricardian cross-sectional framework, we examine the impact of climate change on a nationwide sample of crop, horticulture, livestock and mixed commercial farming systems.


Direct and Indirect Effects of Extreme Weather Events and Potential Estimation Biases

The literature analyzing the effects of extreme weather events on social and economic outcomes has increased significantly in the last few years. Most of these analyses use either self-reported data about whether the storm affected the respondent or aggregated data such as precipitation at municipality level. We argue that these estimates might be biased due to the inclusion of households that are not directly affected but live close enough to be indirectly affected through economic or government assistance spillovers.


Improving welfare through climate-friendly agriculture: The case of the System of Rice Intensification

We use rich survey data to investigate the economic impact of a climate-friendly rice farming method known as the system of rice intensification (SRI) on the welfare of rain-dependent smallholder farmers in Africa. SRI reduces water consumption by half, which makes it a promising farming system in the adaptation to climate change in moisture-constrained areas, and it does not require flooding of rice fields, resulting in reduced methane emissions.


Economics: Higher costs of climate change

An attempt to reconcile the effects of temperature on economic productivity at the micro and macro levels produces predictions of global economic losses due to climate change that are much higher than previous estimates.


Beyond IPCC, Research for Paris 2015 and Beyond

The Climate conference in ParisDecember 2015 is described as “last chance” or “5 to twelve” but in the climate arena there is a risk that we have over-utilized the doomsday vocabulary already in the run-up to Copenhagen, 2009 the better part of a decade ago. For those who have worked on climate issues for several decades it poses a special challenge to calibrate language.Words like “immediate” need careful explanation.


Push renewables to spur carbon pricing

Make wind and solar power even cheaper by opening up access to the electricity gridand ending fossil-fuel subsidies, urge Gernot Wagner and colleagues. Putting a price on carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases to curb emissions must be the centrepiece of any comprehensive climate-change policy. We know it works: pricing carbon creates broad incentives to cut emissions. Yet the current price of carbon remains much too low relative to the hidden environmental, health and societal costs of burning a tonne of coal or a barrel of oil. The global average price is below zero, once half a trillion dollars of fossil-fuel subsidies are factored in.


Adaptive capacity, drought and the performance of community-based drinking water organizations in Costa Rica

Community-based drinking water organizations (CBDWOs) are the most important providers of water in rural areas of the developing world. They are responsible for coping with future threats due to climate change, besides other non-climatic drivers of change such as demographic growth. The inherent capacities of CBDWOs to adapt to external drivers of change would be greatly conditioned by their capacities to initiate and catalyze collective processes.


Gender Differences in Climate Change Risk, Food Security, and Adaptation: A Study of Rural Households’ Reliance on Agriculture and Natural Resources to Sustain Livelihoods

Climate and weather variability in sub-Saharan Africa disproportionately leave female-headed households food insecure. However, the extent and reasons for these gender differences are, thus far, not well understood. This study examines gender-food-climate connections using longitudinal data from rural households in north-eastern South Africa. Results confirm gender distinctions in that male-headed households are more food secure. Importantly, however, female-headed households are not a homogenous group.


Climate change and the Ethiopian economy: a CGE analysis

The paper analyzes the economic impacts of climate change-induced fluctuations on the performance of Ethiopia's agriculture, using a countrywide computable general equilibrium (CGE) model. We model the impacts on agriculture using a Ricardian model, where current agricultural production is modelled as a function of temperature and precipitation, among other things, and where future agriculture is assumed to follow the same climate function. The effect of overall climate change is projected to be relatively benign until approximately 2030, but will become considerably worse thereafter.


Adaptation to Climate Change by Smallholder Farmers in Tanzania

In Sub-Saharan Africa, climate change is set to hit the agricultural sector the most severely and cause suffering, particularly for smallholder farmers. To cushion themselves against potential welfare losses, smallholder farmers need to recognize the changes already taking place in their climate and undertake appropriate investments in adaptation. This study investigates whether these smallholder farmers in Tanzania recognize climate change and, consequently, adapt to it in their agricultural activities.


Climate Change and Food Security in Kenya

The paper investigates the effects of climate change on food security in Kenya. Fixed and random effects regressions for food crop security are estimated. The study further simulates the expected impact of future climate change on food insecurity based on the Special Report on Emissions Scenarios and Atmospheric Oceanic Global Circulation Models. The study is based on county-level panel data for yields of four major crops and daily climate variables data spanning over three decades. The results show that climate variability and change will increase food insecurity.


A Proximate Mirror: Greenhouse Gas Rules and Strategic Behavior under the US Clean Air Act

The development of climate policy in the United States mirrors international developments, with efforts to initiate a coordinated approach giving way to jurisdictions separately taking actions. The centerpiece of US policy is regulation in the electricity sector that identifies a carbon emissions rate standard (intensity standard) for each state but leaves to states the design of policies, including potentially the use of technology policies, emissions rate averaging, or cap and trade.


    Advantages of a Polycentric Approach to Climate Change Policy

    Lack of progress in global climate negotiations has led scholars to reconsider polycentric approaches to climate policy. Several examples of subglobal mechanisms to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions have been touted, but it remains unclear why they might achieve better climate outcomes than global negotiations alone.


    Climate change impacts and adaptation in South Africa

    In this paper we review current approaches and recent advances in research on climate impacts and adaptation in South Africa. South Africa has a well-developed earth system science research program that underpins the climate change scenarios developed for the southern African region. Established research on the biophysical impacts of climate change on key sectors (water, agriculture, and biodiversity) integrates the climate change scenarios but further research is needed in a number of areas, such as the climate impacts on cities and the built environment.


    Ex-post evaluation of the additionality of Clean Development Mechanism Afforestation projects in Tanzania, Uganda and Moldova

    This study presents findings from a systematic comparative research effort to investigate the additionality claims of CDM afforestation projects in Tanzania, Uganda and Moldova. Using what we refer to as an ex-post comparative baseline approach that accounts for how project financing and background economic conditions evolve over a CDM project’s implementation and crediting periods, we demonstrate that the projects in Uganda and Moldova are very likely to be fully additional while only approximately one-quarter of carbon credits resulting from the Tanzania project are genuine.


    Investigating the Sensitivity of Household Food Security to Agriculture-related Shocks and the Implication of Informal Social Capital and Natural Resource Capital

    Resource-poor rural South Africa is characterized by high human densities due to the historic settlement patterns imposed by apartheid, high levels of poverty, under-developed markets and substantially high food insecurity. This chronic food insecurity, combined with climate and weather variability, has led to the adoption of less-conventional adaptation methods in resource-poor rural settings.


    Poor rainfall, crop failure and food shortages: How rural farm households use nature, family, neighbors and friends to cope

    As climate variability becomes more frequent, weather-related events such as poor rainfall, floods or storms are likely to be more common. Because the majority of small-scale sub-Saharan African farmers depend on rain-fed agriculture for food, any weather-related irregularities are likely to translate into food insecurity. This is more evident in resource-poor rural areas. This study examines the impact of weather-related crop failure and the coping mechanisms used by rural farm households.  


    The Problem of Shared Irresponsibility in International Climate Law

    States have treaty-based and customary international law-based responsibilities to ensure that greenhouse gas emissions emanating from their territory do not cause transboundary harm. However, those international legal responsibilities conflict with the observed behavior of states, which suggests a general rule of irresponsible treatment of the global commons.


    A balance of bottom-up and top-down in linking climate policie

    Top-down climate negotiations embodied by the Kyoto Protocol have all but stalled, chiefly because of disagreements over targets and objections to financial transfers. To avoid those problems, many have shifted their focus to linkage of bottom-up climate policies such as regional carbon markets.


    Analysis of adaptation to climate variability and change in Uganda: A Gender and household welfare perspective

    The study establishes the extent to which climate change has occurred in Uganda, analyses choices of adaptation strategies to climate change induced shocks and factors determining the choices made at the household level by gender of the decision maker of the household, and lastly estimates the impact of adaptation strategies employed to covariate shocks on household welfare.


    Investigating the Sensitivity of Household Food Security to Agriculture-related Shocks and the Implication of Informal Social Capital and Natural Resource Capital: The Case of Rural Households in Mpumalanga, South Africa

    Resource-poor rural South Africa is characterised by high human densities due to the historic settlement patterns imposed by apartheid, high levels of poverty, under-developed markets and substantially high food insecurity. This chronic food insecurity combined with climate and weather variability has led to the adoption of less conventional adaptation methods in resource-poor rural settings. This paper examines the impact of agriculture-related shocks on the consumption patterns of rural households.