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Information on Impacts of Climate Change and Adaptation in China

X. J. He*

    The Administrative Center for China’s Agenda 21, Beijing 100038, China

*Corresponding author. Tel.: +86 13466621685; fax: +86 10 58884860. E-mail address: (X. J. He)


Climate change adaptation in China faces dual challanges: the development demand and its increasing pressure. In recent years, China has made great efforts in climate change impact assessment, adaptation policy-making, as well as technological research and development. The objective of this paper is to analyze and summarize the achievements and gaps of improving the adaptation strategies. A case study focusing on China is provided as a reference for other developing countries. In China, positive and negative impacts coexist, with the negatives outweighing the positives. Climate change affects mainly seven fields, including agriculture, water resources, coastal zone, ecosystem and biodiversity, urban development, major projects, and human health. A top-down policy system of climate change adaptation in China consists of 117 national and departmental policies, 31 provincial action plans and 21 provincial adaptation plans. There is an increasing number of climate change adaptation policies appearing in China. Identification, classification and key-chain analysis are performed over the adaptation policies, in order to build up the technology system that captures their structure and characteristics. Progress has been made in the development and application of the top 10 adaptation technologies, such as extreme weather event prediction and early warning technology, integrated adaptation technology for human health, as well as technology for the conservation and restoration of typical climate-sensitive ecosystems. However, gaps still exist in the mismatch between adaptation goals and resource management in terms of adaptation policy-making, adaptation mechanism of global changes, and strategic adaptation technology and top-level design.

Keywords: climate change impacts, adaptation policy, adaptation science and technology, Chinese characteristic

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