Local climate change adaptation planning: A guide for government policy and decision makers in Victoria

Submitted by Hartmut Fünfgeld | published 29th Apr 2013 | last updated 30th Apr 2013


Introduction

The earth’s climate is continuously changing but accelerated rates of climate change over the last century are of significant concern. Increases in average temperatures have been seen around the globe and there is new and stronger evidence that most of the warming observed in the last 50 years is due to human activity.

Climate change is a global issue. It will affect people and places in different parts of the world, including in Victoria. There will always be some degree of uncertainty over the precise scale and timing of climate change taking effect. In Victoria, current trends and projections suggest a warmer, drier future, with an increasing likelihood of more extreme events such as heatwaves, bushfires, flooding, and coastal storm surges. The nature and magnitude of the impacts not only depend on climate change, but also on local geographic and socio-economic factors, and on how well individuals, communities and organisations are prepared and able to adapt to climate change impacts -both to sudden events and gradual changes.

At the local and regional scale, adaptation interventions are most successful if they are based on a thorough understanding of local context. This includes understanding the characteristics of ecosystems, the social fabric of communities, the key industries and sectors operating in an area, and the institutional capacities of the individuals and organisations involved in responding to climate change impacts. It is important that governments take local factors into account when making decision on adapting to climate variability and change.

Citation

Fünfgeld, H. (2012): Local climate change adaptation planning: a guide for government policy and decision makers in Victoria. Melbourne: Victorian Centre for Climate Change Adaptation Research (VCCCAR)