Wednesday, July 13, 2011

A UK university opens a center for climate change adaptation

GreenWise (UK): In a step that will add to UK universities’ growing number of forward-thinking green initiatives, Cranfield University launched a new centre to help businesses and Government adapt to climate change today. The Centre for Climate Change Adaptation (CCCA) will conduct research to identify the risks of and potential adaptations to the changing climate, aiding businesses and the Government in adopting strategies that will prepare them for the effects of climate change.

According to Cranfield, businesses must work quickly to come up with effective strategies to cope with future changes – however, this sort of implementation can be tricky and will vary by sector, the university said.

"Understanding the appropriate business responses to climate change is not straightforward," Dr. Keith Weatherhead, a leader in the new programme, said. "Organisations often already have much of the information required to shape their strategic responses, but need practical help in sorting and analysing it, placing it in the context of future socio-economic changes and the other business risks they face, and then summarising it for their boards and executives."

Cranfield’s centre will aid businesses in this endeavour. Already the university has been working with the water and agriculture sectors on climate change adaptation, as well as advising the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) on compiling risk assessments on the impacts of climate change to its operations.

The CCCA, which is run virtually and provides a central point-of-contact for its clients, is underpinned by Cranfield’s previous projects, including an investigation of adaptation strategies for UK water companies, an initiative dealing with water supply and sanitation in urban Africa, and a programme working in agricultural water resource management in England and Wales....

Cranfield University, shot by Richard Schmidt, Wikimedia Commons via Geograph UK, under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic license

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