Research

Agricultural Adaptation Strategies for Climate Change in California

Under an executive order from the governor, the state of California is required to complete an assessment every two years of the impacts of climate change on California’s water supply, public health, agriculture, coastline, and forestry.

Included in the assessment are reports on mitigation and adaptation strategies that may combat the anticipated negative effects of climate change. The Stockholm Environment Institute was invited to participate in the most recent assessment, in 2008, and asked to evaluate the impacts of climate change on managing water supplies within the Sacramento and San Joaquin River basins, which together account for the bulk of the state’s available water supplies and irrigated land.

The focus of SEI’s research was to use the WEAP to assess how changes in climate may impact water supply reliability for irrigated agriculture, which represents the largest water user in the state.

Since initial investigations suggested that climate change will make it increasingly difficult to meet agricultural water demands, this work was extended to consider how agricultural management practices could change in response to changing water supplies such that water shortages were minimized.

The funder of the project was California Energy Commission.

Relevant publications
Purkey, D.R., B.A. Joyce, S. Vicuna, M.W. Hanemann, L.L. Dale, D. Yates and J.A. Dracup. (2008) Robust Analysis of Future Climate Change Impacts on Water for Agriculture and Other Sectors: A Case Study in the Sacramento Valley. Climatic Change 87(Suppl 1): S109-S122

Purkey, D., Joyce, B., Vicuna, S., Hanemann, M., Dale, L., Yates, D., and Dracup, J. (2008). "Robust analysis of future climate change impacts on water for agriculture and other sectors: a case study in the Sacramento Valley." Climatic Change, (87), pp 109-122, doi:10.1007/s10584-007-9375-8, March (2008). http://www.weap21.org/downloads/CCSacramento.pdf /

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