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Title: Climate change effects on agriculture: Economic responses to biophysical shocks

Agricultural production is sensitive to weather and will thus be directly affected by climate change. Plausible estimates of these climate change impacts require combined use of climate, crop, and economic models. Results from previous studies vary substantially due to differences in models, scenarios, and data. This paper is part of a collective effort to systematically integrate these three types of models. We focus on the economic component of the assessment, investigating how nine global economic models of agriculture represent endogenous responses to seven standardized climate change scenarios produced by two climate and five crop models. These responses include adjustments in yields, area, consumption, and international trade. We apply biophysical shocks derived from the IPCC’s Representative Concentration Pathway that result in end-of-century radiative forcing of 8.5 watts per square meter. The mean biophysical impact on crop yield with no incremental CO2 fertilization is a 17 percent reduction globally by 2050 relative to a scenario with unchanging climate. Endogenous economic responses reduce yield loss to 11 percent, increase area of major crops by 12 percent, and reduce consumption by 2 percent. Agricultural production, cropland area, trade, and prices show the greatest degree of variability in response to climate change, and consumption themore » lowest. The sources of these differences includes model structure and specification; in particular, model assumptions about ease of land use conversion, intensification, and trade. This study identifies where models disagree on the relative responses to climate shocks and highlights research activities needed to improve the representation of agricultural adaptation responses to climate change.« less
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Journal Article
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Journal Name: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 111(9):3274-3279
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (US)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
climate change adaptation model intercomparison integrated assessment agricultural productivity