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Adaptation to climate change and climate variability: Do it now or wait and see?

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  • Narita, Daiju
  • Quaas, Martin F.

Abstract

As growing attention is paid to climate change adaptation as an actual policy issue, the significant meaning of climate variability in adaptation decisions is beginning to be recognized. By using a real option framework, we shed light on how climate change and climate variability affect individuals' (farmers') investment decisions with regard to adaptation. As a plausible case in which the delay carries policy implications, we investigate farmers' choices when adaptation involves the use of an open-access resource (water). The results show that uncoordinated farmers with a high risk aversion may under-adapt while farmers with a low risk aversion would over-adapt under the same conditions. Private adaptation should be supported or discouraged accordingly if farmers are not convinced about the possibilities of collective resource management in the long run.

Suggested Citation

  • Narita, Daiju & Quaas, Martin F., 2012. "Adaptation to climate change and climate variability: Do it now or wait and see?," Kiel Working Papers 1809, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:ifwkwp:1809
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Alexander Golub & Daiju Narita, 2011. "Uncertainty in Integrated Assessment Models of Climate Change: Alternative Analytical Approaches," Working Papers 2011.02, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
    2. Christophe Gouel & Sébastien Jean, 2015. "Optimal Food Price Stabilization in a Small Open Developing Country," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 29(1), pages 72-101.
    3. Avinash K. Dixit & Robert S. Pindyck, 1994. "Investment under Uncertainty," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, number 5474.
    4. Tol, Richard S.J., 2005. "Emission abatement versus development as strategies to reduce vulnerability to climate change: an application of FUND," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 10(05), pages 615-629, October.
    5. Rosenzweig, Mark R & Binswanger, Hans P, 1993. "Wealth, Weather Risk and the Composition and Profitability of Agricultural Investments," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 103(416), pages 56-78, January.
    6. Dixit Avinash & Rob Rafael, 1994. "Switching Costs and Sectoral Adjustments in General Equilibrium with Uninsured Risk," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 62(1), pages 48-69, February.
    7. Robert Mendelsohn & Ariel Dinar, 2003. "Climate, Water, and Agriculture," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 79(3), pages 328-341.
    8. Kenneth J. Arrow & Anthony C. Fisher, 1974. "Environmental Preservation, Uncertainty, and Irreversibility," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 88(2), pages 312-319.
    9. Seo, S. Niggol & Mendelsohn, Robert, 2008. "An analysis of crop choice: Adapting to climate change in South American farms," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 109-116, August.
    10. Henry, Claude, 1974. "Investment Decisions Under Uncertainty: The "Irreversibility Effect."," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 64(6), pages 1006-1012, December.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    adaptation to climate change; climate variability; risk and uncertainty; real option; water; open-access resources;

    JEL classification:

    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • Q20 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - General
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming

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