Socioeconomic consequences of changed water balance and agriculture

Contributions: CICERO (WP Leader. Aaheim), Noragric, collaborating institutes in Subequatorial Africa
Main purpose: To estimate national economic consequences due to changes in agriculture and to exemplify how agriculture may adapt to projected hydrological changes.
Downscaled climate scenarios developed in WP 2 provide a unique opportunity to take local conditions and local variations explicitly into account in analyses of national impacts of climate change and adaptation. By means of a regionalized integrated macroeconomic model a comprehensive analyses of implications for welfare and distribution will be made by simultaneously assessing impacts of climate change both on the local and the national levels. In WP4 a module for agriculture will be developed to reflect options and barriers to adaptation in agriculture in Malawi, Botswana and areas of South Africa. This requires explicit modelling of rural farming in the informal sector, that is, peasants not fully integrated in the national economy. The informal sector employs a large part of the population in developing countries. These people are particularly vulnerable to climate change because their existence depends entirely on the outcome of their agricultural activities, and their alternatives are strictly constrained.
The results of WP3 will be used, firstly, to determine changes in the land’s potential ability to feed a given population by sub-region, thereby providing a background for predicting how the rural population is affected by the climatic changes, in isolation. Secondly, the welfare of the rural population is also strongly affected by traditional economic activities and changes in market conditions, either because of competition of land or because it affects already constrained opportunities to get paid work elsewhere. By integrating rural agriculture in the informal sector in the macroeconomic model, a study of the broader range of welfare effects of climate change is made possible, such as supply of food in formal and informal sectors, income distribution, flows of people between formal and informal sector and unemployment.

Activities and milestones:

4.1 A sub-model for agricultural practices, including the informal sector, and integrate it into the GRACE model
4.2 Determination of changes in land’s ability to feed the rural population with reference to the results of WP3.
4.3 A broader welfare-economic analysis of climatic changes as described by WP1 and WP2 for Malawi and Botswana and areas of South Africa

Published Jan. 13, 2011 1:07 PM - Last modified Jan. 13, 2011 1:07 PM