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Forschungs- und Transferzentrum "Nachhaltigkeit und Klimafolgenmanagement"
Forschungs- und Transferzentrum "Nachhaltigkeit und Klimafolgenmanagement"

North American Symposium on Climate Change Adaptation

"Fostering Resilience and the Regional Capacity to Adapt"

New York, USA, 16th-18th August 2016

North America and the Caribbean are affected by extreme weather and climate change at a variety of scales and within the context of an even greater diversity of geographies, ecologies and institutions. Whereas droughts affect the western part of the U.S. and Canada, the eastern portion of the continent is particularly prone to flooding and sea level rise. Even in the Caribbean, where tropical cyclones have been the primary risk factor for generations, a persistent drought is leading to severe ecological stresses that are driving unprecedented transformations in economy and society.

According to the Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) produced by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), recent climate variations and individual extreme events demonstrate both impacts of climate-related stresses and the vulnerabilities of exposed systems. Many climate stresses that carry risk—particularly related to severe heat, heavy precipitation, and declining snowpack—will increase in frequency and/or severity in North America in the coming decades.

AR5 also states that current and future climate-related drivers of risk for small islands during the21st century, such as those in the Caribbean region, will include sea level rise (SLR), tropical and extratropical cyclones, increasing air and sea surface temperatures, and changing rainfall patterns. In addition, these patterns are likely to persist in some of the most advanced urban environments in the world, including Miami, Washington, D.C., New York and Boston. Among other things, AR5 states that adaptation to climate change generates greater benefits when delivered in conjunction with other development activities, such as disaster risk reduction and community-based approaches to development. Whether it is a sparsely populated Caribbean island or a major continental urban region, adaptation processes are increasingly be recognized as critical steps where conventional modes of consumption, production, and risk mitigation are unsustainable.

The above state of affairs illustrates the need for a better understanding of how climate change affects North America and for the identification of processes, methods and tools which may help countries and communities to develop an adaptive capacity. There is also a critical need to showcase successful examples of how to manage the social, economic and political complexities posed by climate change, so that lessons can be learned and best practices may be disseminated.

It is against this background that the North American Symposium On Climate Change Adaptation (Symposium) is being organized by the International Climate Change Information Programme (ICCIP), Columbia University (USA), and the Hamburg University of Applied Sciences (Germany). Taking place in New York City from August 16-18th 2016, the Symposium will be a truly interdisciplinary event, mobilizing scholars, practitioners and members of governmental agencies, undertaking research and/or executing climate change projects in North America and the Caribbean region.

The North American Symposium On Climate Change Adaptation will focus on “fostering resilience and the regional capacity to adapt,” meaning that it will serve the purpose of showcasing experiences from research, field projects and best practices in climate change adaptation and resilience among countries in the region, which may being to translate the integration of climate science with socio-economic policies in the public and private sectors.

Letzte Änderung: 29.08.16

An die Redaktion


Svenja Scheday  
International Climate Change Information Programme



Flyer North America Symposium