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The role of ecosystem services in climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction

This paper analyses the connections between climate change impacts, ecosystem degradation and increased risk of climate-related disasters. It defines the central role of ecosystem management in climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction (DRR) and assesses the challenges for enhanced ecosystem management for climate change adaptation and DRR. Given the increasing importance of ecosystem services and management in climate change adaptation and DRR, the paper concludes that political commitment at the highest level is urgently needed if ecosystem management is to have the adequate weight it deserves in the post-2012 climate change agreement. The paper also recommends the allocation of further resources for integrating ecosystem management into climate change and DRR portfolios, including within national policy-setting, capacity building, planning and practices, particularly in developing countries vulnerable to climate change impacts and climate-related disasters.