Integrated assessment of adaptation to climate change of agricultural systems in the North of the Netherlands


Agricultural systems in the Netherlands are influenced by changing policies and markets at global, EU and country level. Globally, climate change became an important issue during last decades. In many regions in the world one can already observe effects of the changes and variations in climatic conditions on crop productivity, farmers’ income and land use. Also for the future of Dutch agriculture the importance of climate change cannot be ignored; effects of weather extremes seem particularly important.

In order to cope with the effects of climate change farmers in the Netherlands have to develop adaptation strategies. These strategies can include changes in management within the current farming system (size, intensity, specialization) and/or a shift to alternative farming systems. Adaptation strategies can also include alternative functions that the agricultural sector can provide to the society, such as sustainable energy production, nature conservation, care farming, etc. The case study for this project is the Dutch province of Flevoland. Large scale intensive arable farming is the main type of agricultural activity in the region. The main questions to be answered in this study are:

1.    Assess the vulnerability of the present farming systems in Flevoland under the changing policy, market and climate conditions.

2.    What are possible images of farms of the future in Flevoland and what is the impact of climate change?

3.    What adaptation strategies can be implemented by arable farmers in Flevoland to maintain income, yields and environmental performance?

4.    What research tools can be applied to assess the adaptation strategies to climate change of arable farmers in Flevoland?

The research methods that can be used in the study include crop growth simulation and bio-economic models, scenario analysis and cost-benefit analysis. 




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Pytrik Reidsma                                   0317 – 48 55 78