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Adaptation to climate change in rainfed agriculture in the Global South: Soil biodiversity as natural insurance

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Yoro Sidibé, Sébastien Foudi, Unai Pascual, Mette Termansen

Increased drought frequency in many parts of the world, especially in the global South, is expected due to accelerating climate change. We present a bioeconomic model that unpacks the role of soil biodiversity as contributing to both increasing and stabilizing agricultural productivity in low-input rainfed farming systems. The natural insurance value of soil biodiversity mostly depends on farmers' risk preferences as well as on the frequency of drought events to be insured against. We show that when the probability of drought increases, soil biodiversity conservation can be an optimal ecosystem-based adaptation strategy. However, this is only likely to be the case up to a given drought probability threshold. The natural insurance value of soil biodiversity for climate change adaptation in drought prone rainfed agricultural systems depends on a combination of key hydrological, agronomic and economic parameters.

Original languageEnglish
JournalEcological Economics
Volume146
Pages (from-to)588-596
Number of pages9
ISSN0921-8009
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2018

    Research areas

  • Adaptation, Bioeconomic Modelling, Climate Change, Ecosystem Services, Risk and Uncertainty

ID: 189264335