A changing climate leads to changes in the frequency, intensity, spatial extent and duration of weather and climate events, and can result in unprecedented extremes, both through slow onset disasters (e.g. consecutive years of drought) and extreme events (e.g. heavy flooding). Many such events will have a direct impact on agricultural systems now and in the future, including through increased duration, frequency or intensity of heat waves, increased frequency of heavy precipitation in many regions, intensified droughts across some areas, upward trends in extreme coastal high-water levels, and changes in flood patterns. Crops, livestock and people will all be affected.
Agriculture is among the sectors most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change and weather extremes because of its dependence on natural resources such as water and ecosystem services. Water supply for agriculture, for example, will be critical to sustain production and even more important to provide the increase in food production required for the world’s growing population.
Transformational approaches will be required in the management of natural resources, including new climate-smart agriculture policies, practices and tools, better use of climate science information in assessing risks and vulnerability, and increased financing for food security. Explore CDKN insights below.