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Terms-of-trade and the funding of adaptation to climate change and variability: An empirical analysis


  • Schenker, Oliver
  • Stephan, Gunter


This paper analyses the interplay between international trade, regional adaptation and North-to-South transfers for funding adaptation within the framework of a dynamic computable gen-eral equilibrium model, where impacts of climate change depend on changes in precipitation and temperature. If all regions, even the least developed ones, own the necessary resources for adapting optimally to climate change and variability, by mid-century less than 10% of the regions' GDP would be invested for avoiding almost 40% of climate change damages. This has measurable effects on the regions' competitiveness as well as on the terms-of-trade. If, however, the developing world does not own sufficient resources for adapting optimally to climate change, as is to expected, funding of adaptation can make sense from an economic perspective. In particular the Hicks-Kaldor criterion is fulfilled as aggregated welfare gains at least compensate the costs of providing financial assistance for adaptation.

Suggested Citation

  • Schenker, Oliver & Stephan, Gunter, 2012. "Terms-of-trade and the funding of adaptation to climate change and variability: An empirical analysis," ZEW Discussion Papers 12-056, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:zewdip:12056

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Agrawala, Shardul & Bosello, Francesco & Carraro, Carlo & de Cian, Enrica & Lanzi, Elisa, 2011. "Adapting to Climate Change: Costs, Benefits, and Modelling Approaches," International Review of Environmental and Resource Economics, now publishers, vol. 5(3), pages 245-284, August.
    2. Manne, Alan & Mendelsohn, Robert & Richels, Richard, 1995. "MERGE : A model for evaluating regional and global effects of GHG reduction policies," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 17-34, January.
    3. Francesco Bosello & Carlo Carraro & Enrica De Cian, 2010. "Climate Policy and the Optimal Balance between Mitigation, Adaptation and Unavoided Damage," Working Papers 2010.32, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
    4. Kelly C. de Bruin & Rob B. Dellink & Richard S.J. Tol, 2007. "AD-DICE: an implementation of adaptation in the DICE model," Working Papers FNU-126, Research unit Sustainability and Global Change, Hamburg University, revised Feb 2007.
    5. Schenker, Oliver, 2010. "Transporting goods and damages. The role of trade on the distribution of climate change costs," MPRA Paper 25350, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Juhwan Lee & Steven Gryze & Johan Six, 2011. "Effect of climate change on field crop production in California’s Central Valley," Climatic Change, Springer, vol. 109(1), pages 335-353, December.
    7. Roxana Julia & Faye Duchin, 2005. "World Trade as the Adjustment Mechanism of Agriculture to Climate Change," Rensselaer Working Papers in Economics 0507, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Department of Economics.
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    More about this item


    funding of adaptation; climate change; international trade; multi-regional dynamic CGE model;

    JEL classification:

    • C68 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Computable General Equilibrium Models
    • D58 - Microeconomics - - General Equilibrium and Disequilibrium - - - Computable and Other Applied General Equilibrium Models
    • F18 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade and Environment
    • Q56 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environment and Development; Environment and Trade; Sustainability; Environmental Accounts and Accounting; Environmental Equity; Population Growth
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming

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