Reflections: Adaptation vs Mitigation?

For those engaged as professionals in the technical work of adaptation, questions of mitigation are often separated into different departments, programs and funding streams (Crawford, 2018). However, for members of the public, the two are closely linked, if not inseparable. In the face of painful and frightening information that can accompany climate adaptation planning, a pathway for action through demonstrated mitigation efforts by government, as well as opportunities for meaningful community climate action, is an important step to creating a psychologically supportive process.

The growing interest in Low Carbon Resilience suggests that it is becoming increasingly important to break down the silos between mitigation and adaptation to identify co-benefits across the two approaches, and to implement actions that simultaneously meet the objectives of greenhouse gas emissions reductions and climate change preparedness. As Crawford (2018) explains in the report, Low Carbon Resilience: Best practices for professionals, “LCR is a lens that can be used to embed adaptation and mitigation at all levels of governance, planning and practice” (p. 68). More detailed examples of LCR in practice are found in the report.

For the purposes of engagement, it’s important to consider that adaptation conversations will likely require attention to principles climate communications more broadly and the psychology of climate change, which will include the need to address the intersection with mitigation and climate action.


Icon for the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

Strategic Dialogue and Engagement for Climate Adaptation Copyright © by Simon Fraser University is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

Share This Book