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Published on January 3, 2008

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Socio-political aspects of adapting to Climate Change:  Socio-political aspects of adapting to Climate Change Geoff Syme Research Director - Society, Economy & Policy CSIRO Land and Water August 16, 2005 Methodology:  Methodology Workshops Three workshops were held in Wagga Wagga at the end of May 2005. Workshops were held for different stakeholder groups: farmers (N=17), catchment managers (N=14), and local government officers (N=7). Climate Change Scenario Participants were required to complete a set of questions pertaining to a climate change scenario. Participants reviewed a list of potential actions they could undertake to address climate change. The predicted impact of each action on the catchment water security was expressed as a number ranging between -3 (major negative effects on catchment water security) to +3 (major positive effects on catchment water security) Participants rated the perceived effect of each action on a list of impact factors developed in an earlier stage of the research. Possible Future Climate Scenario:  Possible Future Climate Scenario The climate change scenario was described as follows. “You might expect average temperatures in the Murrumbidgee catchment to increase by one and a half degrees Celsius. The climate change would also affect water resources within the Murrumbidgee catchment in the following way: Temperature up by about 1.5°C Rainfall down by 12% Evaporation up by 10% Water stored in catchment dams down 40% – 50% Long term average initial allocation down to 44% Long term average final allocation down to 70%.” Rating the Effect of Actions on Impact Factors:  Rating the Effect of Actions on Impact Factors Catchment water security relates to the availability of water to meet catchment demands given the effects of the changed climate (eg. increased temperature & evaporation) -3 -2 -1 0 1 2 3 extreme enough extreme not enough water water more than enough water to cope Action List and Impact Factors at the Farm Scale:  Action List and Impact Factors at the Farm Scale Action List No action Change enterprise mix Buy more water Use water more efficiently Harvest and store more water Plant high value crops Cut back your enterprise Buy more land Employ minimum tillage Impact Factors Farm profit Ability to manage water within or across seasons Invest in catchment management activities The natural environment The farming community The regional community The farmer and his/her family Action List and Impact Factors at the Catchment Scale:  Action List and Impact Factors at the Catchment Scale Action List No action Employ cloud seeding Develop and institute stricter controls for licensing and monitoring water use Replace channels with pipes Create en-route water storages Conduct R&D for adaptive crop stock and breeds Increase government coordination Establish a market-based catchment water bank Ban inter-valley transfer Impact Factors Long term catchment planning Economic sustainability of the catchment The natural environment Reaching catchment plan targets Community involvement and investment in catchment management activities Resilience of the community Population profile Data Analysis: Level of Perceived Importance of Impacts:  Data Analysis: Level of Perceived Importance of Impacts How important were the impact factors perceived to be at each of the scales (Farm, Catchment, Local Government)? Participants rated the importance of each impact factor… 1 2 3 4 5 extremely very important hardly not at all important important important important … and ranked each impact factor from the most important (=1) factor to the least important (=7) factor. Perceived Importance = Rated Importance x Ranked Importance Relative Importance of Impact Factors at the Farm Scale:  Relative Importance of Impact Factors at the Farm Scale NOTE: Lower numbers equate to higher mean importance Relative Importance of Impact Factors at the Catchment Scale:  Relative Importance of Impact Factors at the Catchment Scale NOTE: Lower numbers equate to higher mean importance Data Analysis: Decision Frameworks at Each Scale:  Data Analysis: Decision Frameworks at Each Scale Which actions were preferred most/least at each scale? No Action was the least preferred option at all three scales. There were a number of actions that were viewed positively in terms of their perceived effects on the most important impact factors at each scale. These were: Farm Scale – Use water more efficiently; Employ minimum tillage; Harvest and store more water; Plant high value crops Catchment Scale – Conduct R&D for adaptive crop stock and breeds; Establish a market-based catchment waterbank; Create en-route water storages. Negative Decision Framework for NO ACTION at the Farm Scale:  Negative Decision Framework for NO ACTION at the Farm Scale Positive Decision Framework for USE WATER MORE EFFICIENTLY at the Farm Scale:  Positive Decision Framework for USE WATER MORE EFFICIENTLY at the Farm Scale Negative Decision Framework for NO ACTION at the Catchment Scale:  Negative Decision Framework for NO ACTION at the Catchment Scale Positive Decision Framework for CONDUCT R&D at the Catchment Scale:  Positive Decision Framework for CONDUCT R&D at the Catchment Scale How did people respond:  Not probabilities Disinterested in scientists views Benchmark from own aspirations In the long term hope that climate variability response suffice How did people respond Stoll-Kleemann et al (2001):  Denial by “exaggerating costs of shifting away from comfortable lifestyles” Blame on inaction of others – including governments Uncertain and far away Stoll-Kleemann et al (2001) Staat et al (1994) :  Mean hope as measured by expected affective balance (EBS) and standard deviations for four time frames. Staat et al (1994) Staats et al (1994):  Staats et al (1994) Means and standard deviations for the scales of the Hope Index for four time frames. Lindberg et al (1974) :  Lindberg et al (1974) Emotional involvement in future events as a function of temporal distance. Slide20:  Emotional involvement in future events as a function of temporal distance. Lindberg et al (1974) Geissler (2002) :  Geissler (2002) “Social systems, communities, societies, families, businesses and institutions are most prone to crises and imbalances when they only have very limited opportunities to reorganise themselves because of a lack of heterogeneity in temporal structures and processes.” Geissler (2002) :  Geissler (2002) “There is no rational economic basis for our obsession with speed.” Hukkinen (1999):  Hukkinen (1999) Feedback between formal environmental institutions and the mental models of experts. Required basic ingredients of learning:  Required basic ingredients of learning Information Motivation Capacity to implement (Lambin, 2005) Slide25:  But also reinforcement to complete learning over Time and Issues Slide26:  How we can coordinate adaptive learning is the major socio-political issue facing adaptation to climate change Thank You :  Thank You Land and Water Dr Geoff Syme Research Director – Society, Economy and Policy Phone +61 8 9333 6278 Email Geoff.Syme@csiro.au Web www.csiro.au/group Contact CSIRO Phone 1300 363 400 +61 3 9545 2176 Email enquiries@csiro.au Web www.csiro.au

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