Adaptation to climate change

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Abstract

The recognition that climate change, as an environmental hazard operating on a global scale, poses a unique challenge to human societies is being accompanied by a growing awareness that this threat is non-linear and potentially irreversible, and that proposed actions may have wideranging practical and ethical implications.1 Responses to climate change have been classified according to whether they aim to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases (mitigation) or reduce the impacts of ongoing and expected climate change on human communities (adaptation). Effective mitigation benefits not only human systems, but also all natural systems.2 However, the distinction is not always easy to apply in practice as mitigation and adaptation do not occur independently: when one is implemented, the other can be affected in both or either of favourable and adverse ways.3 Decisions on adaptation and mitigation are taken at different governance levels, and inter-relationships exist within and across each level.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEnvironmental Medicine
PublisherCRC Press
Pages521-530
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9781444128444
ISBN (Print)9780340946565
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2010

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