Human-forced climate change & the South Pacific South Pacific Study Group Griffith Asia Institute, Griffith University 23 May, Nathan Campus, N72 Room 1-18 Professor Brendan Mackey, PhD Director, Griffith Climate Change Response Program Griffith University email: [email protected] overview 1. What is the “climate change problem”? Mitigation Adaptation 1. The challenges for SP Existing problems get worse Problems emerge from interactions New problems 3. The way forward Priorities Funding opportunities & risks Integration & mainstreaming National a& regional responses what is the climate change problem? human forced, rapid climate change is an empirical scientific fact Two necessary responses: 1. Mitigation – reducing GHG emissions to a safe level 2. Adaptation – adapting to impacts of unavoidable climate change What will “business as usual deliver? +12°C by 2200 ?! +5°C by 2100? (Source: Meinhausen, pers. comm.) What will “business as usual deliver? +12°C by 2200 ?! +5°C by 2100? (Source: Meinhausen, pers. comm.) increasing international recognition of climate change as a security issue Make no mistake… climate change not only exacerbates threats to peace and security, it is a threat to international peace and security Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary-General Climate change has very real implications for international peace and security Susan Rice (US Ambassador to UN) Most national security establishments considered global warming as among the biggest security challenges of the century Peter Wittig (Permanent Representative of Germany to UN) Source: Security Council 6587th Meeting, 2011 http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2011/sc10332.doc.htm climate change impacts will be increasingly felt in coming decades Rising sea levels - storms surges, king tides, coastal inundation, ground water intrusion Increasing intensity and frequency of extreme weather events – more droughts & floods Increasing land and sea temperatures Ocean acidification Ice melt on land Shifting ocean currents the challenge for the South Pacific South Pacific South Pacific region: 22 Island Countries &Territories-200 high islands, 2,500 low islands & atolls Pop. 2010: 9.9 million (15 million by 2035) 60% rural/40% urban Ocean-rich summary of regional climate change Temperatures will continue to increase More very hot days Sea level will continue to rise Changing rainfall patterns Ocean acidification will continue Less frequent but more intense tropical cyclones Ocean currents? Source: Climate Change in the Pacific: Scientific Assessment and New Research. Volume 1: Regional Overview. Volume 2: Country Reports. Available from November 2011. The average positions of the major climate features in November to April. The arrows show near surface winds, the blue shading represents the bands of rainfall convergence zones, the dashed oval shows the West Pacific Warm Pool and H represents typical positions of moving high pressure systems. Climate change related changes to environmental variables in Milne Bay Source: Skewes et al. (2011) Melanesian coastal and marine ecosystem assets: assessment framework and Milne Bay case study. CSIRO. increase in local extremes not just means Generally, increasing intensity & frequency of extreme events; floods, droughts, fires, cyclones (not earthquakes) no one lives in a place called “Average” The question is how will the climate change where you live and work? local affects of climate change are contingent exposure is a critical factor adaptive capacity varies within/between countries Source: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-03-04/pacific-warriors-climatechange-action/4550898 adaptation is “local” but regional responses are also needed 1. Trans-border problems 2. Problems held in common between Melanesian countries 3. Shared (region-wide) capacity-building needs migration, displacement & refugees Source: Foresight: Migration and Global Environmental Change (2011) Final Project Report. The Government Office for Science, London A number of dimensions of climate change have the potential – along with non-climatic environmental changes – to influence the drivers of migration Internal and trans-boundary migration Poses logistical challenges & geo-political challenges Trapped populations Cities are extremely vulnerable to future environmental change Long term interactions critical climate change impacts on fisheries Source: Vulnerability of Tropical Pacific Fisheries and Aquaculture to Climate Change, published by the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) 1. 2. 3. 4. Changes in the distribution and abundance of tuna (mixed) Decline in coastal fisheries and coral reefs (20-50%) Increases in freshwater fisheries production (mixed) Increased operating costs A range of adaptations can substantially reduce the risks and costs, but they need to be tailored to the circumstances Planning for change is vital because fish is the single biggest source of animal protein in the Pacific diet. Another 115,000 tonnes of fish needed to help provide good nutrition for the expanding population of the region by 2030 - an increase of 47% climate change impacts on vector-borne diseases VBDs such as malaria, dengue, tick-borne diseases and plague are particularly susceptible for a number of reasons: the geographical distribution and behaviour of vectors and their hosts are intimately associated with environmental determinants, and transmission dynamics tend to favour warmer, wetter environments. Historically experienced relatively few malaria outbreaks and the population has limited immunity to the disease and less awareness of its prevention than lowland populations. Countries or areas at risk of dengue, 2011. The disease is currently distributed only in areas in which the temperature remains >10°C year-round.) In recent years, cases of malaria reported at increasingly higher altitudes - the effects of climate change such as increased ambient temperature, rainfall affecting the availability of breeding sites and vector ecology and indirect effects on human behaviour, may be contributory factors Source: Final project report: Strengthen control of vector borne diseases to lessen the impact of climate change in the Western Pacific Region with focus on Cambodia, Mongolia and Papua New Guinea. World Health Organization Western Pacific Region 2012; http://www.wpro.who.int/mvp/climate_change/en/ climate change adaptation adaptation consists of actions undertaken to reduce the adverse consequences of climate change, as well as to harness any beneficial opportunities. Adaptation actions aim to reduce the impacts of climate stresses on human and natural systems. special role for ecosystem-based adaptation Source:www.bestlibrary.org/newslaw/2008/07/wel come.html “Approaches that involve the services that biodiversity and ecosystems provide as part of an overall adaptation strategy to help people adapt to the adverse effects of climate change are known as ecosystem-based approaches to adaptation. The underlying principle is that healthy ecosystems can play a vital role in maintaining and increasing resilience to climate change and in reducing climate-related risk and vulnerability.” (Source: UNFCCC SSBSTA Report FCCC/SBSTA/2011/INF.8)d Sustainably managing, conserving and restoring ecosystems so that they continue to provide the services that allow people to adapt to climate change This approach builds on traditional knowledge Generates a range of social, economic and cultural benefits and helps to conserve biodiversity Co-benefits for climate change mitigation through improved retention and restoration of ecosystem carbon stocks Community leadership critical “People from Melanesia heavily rely on their land for their livelihoods. They depend on their environment for food and income from cash crops, for clean water, fertile soil, forests for building materials, medicine and for hunting. Compared to other countries, most Melanesians have very small ‘carbon footprints’ having contributed very little to global warming and climate change. Unfortunately they will be among those most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change due to their high dependency on their immediate environment and close proximity to the coast.” Live & Learn Environmental Education Crops-grown on land accessed through customary land tenure arrangement or leased from traditional land owners Source: Sharma K.L. (2006) Food Security in the South Pacific Island Countries with Special Reference to the Fiji Islands. Research Paper No. 2006/68, UNU. Country GDP (US$B) GDP per capita ($) % GDP in Agriculture % workforce in Agriculture Fiji 3.946 4,800 11 70 The Solomon Islands 1.039 3,400 33 75 Vanuatu 0.761 4,900 21 65 New Caladonia 9..28 37,700 2 20 15.390 2,700 28 85 Kiribati 0.174 5,900 24 3 Samoa 0.712 6,200 9 65 PNG Source: The World Fact Book, CIA ecosystem-based adaptation methodology Source: Skewes et al. (2011) Melanesian coastal and marine ecosystem assets: assessment framework and Milne Bay case study. CSIRO. examples of ecosystem-based adaptation measures that provide co-benefits Social and cultural Adaptation measure Adaptive function Mangrove conservation Protection against storm surges, sealevel rise and coastal inundation Provision of employment options (fisheries and prawn cultivation) Maintenanc e of nutrient and water flow Opportunities for Prevention of land slides Protection of Indigenous peoples and local Communities Forest conservation and sustainable forest management Contribution to food security Recreation Culture Economic Biodiversity Mitigation Generation of income to local communities through marketing of mangrove products (fish, dyes, medicines) Conservation of species that live or breed in mangroves Conservation of carbon stocks, both above and belowground Potential generation of income through: Conservation of habitat for forest plant and animal species Conservation of carbon stocks Ecotourism, Recreation Reduction of emissions from deforestation degradation Non-wood forest products Source: Convention on Biological Diversity. Connecting Biodiversity and Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation: Report of the Second Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group on Biodiversity and Climate Change. Technical Series No. 41. Montreal: Convention on Biological Diversity calculation of costs for each option implemented throughout Lami Town, Fiji (at a 3% discount rate) Source: Rao N.S., Carruthers T.J.B., Anderson P., Sivo L., Saxby T., Durbin, T., Jungblut V., Hills T., Chape S. 2013. An economic analysis of ecosystem-based adaptation and engineering options for climate change adaptation in Lami Town, Republic of the Fiji Islands. A technical report by the Secretariat of the Pacifi c Regional Environment Programme. – Apia, Samoa : SPREP 2013 the way forward… no shortage of climate change adaptation activity in the region Pacific Islands Framework for Action on Climate Change (PIFACC) Hundreds of “on-ground”, community-based climate change projects under way in the South Pacific, but, what will be their legacy? What will happen to the data and information they produce? Will it be “discoverable” and “re-usable” by practitioners and decision makers? Will national and regional priorities be addressed? Will knowledge gaps be filled? How will wasteful duplication be avoided? Will these on-ground projects run by partners be guided by and consistent with national and regional policies? Will they be integrated into strategic planning and governmental processes? no shortage of climate change funds for the region Green Climate Fund $100 billion per year by 2020 for mitigation and adaptation in developing countries $600 billion to 1.5 trillion (2012) Estimated annual cost to help developing countries transition to low-carbon and climate-resilient economies Australia invested $150 million from 2008–09 to meet high priority climate adaptation needs in vulnerable countries. This assistance will be scaled up by $178.2 million over two years to 2012–13—a total of $328.2 million regional priorities 1. Accessing Climate change adaptation finance Mitigation a funding opportunity e.g. diesel generators, REDD 2. Harmonisation & prioritization of regional climate change mitigation & adaptation projects & programs National priorities (e.g. PNG VBD) Shared problems (coastal zone management, tourism, water security) Trans-border issues (migration/displacement, fisheries) 3. Capacity building of early career practitioners & researchers in country line-departments and regional bodies 4. Mainstreaming climate change responses into sustainable development, green economy & national/community planning Scenarios Strategies Options Actions “additionality” or co-benefits? Is climate change adaptation… a Furphy? just “the latest fashion”? a case of the “invisible man”? or more like the “Emperor's new clothes”?