With climate change becoming more severe, international organizations, national governments, nongovernmental organizations, and local communities need to find new ways to work together to prepare for, and survive, its effects. Many of the major policy responses to climate change fall under two categories.
- Mitigation: reducing or preventing the emission of greenhouse gases.
- Adaptation: reacting to the effects of climate change that have already occurred or are projected to occur in the future.
There are a few international efforts to assist adaptation in developing countries, which are often hit the hardest by the effects of climate change. Other efforts are led by local governments or community groups working to make their homes and livelihoods more climate resilient.
Because the effects of climate change are so varied, adaptations need to vary too in order to respond to the needs of the affected areas. Adaptations run the gamut from relocating residents of areas susceptible to flooding to securing food and water supplies in regions affected by drought. The map below includes different countries’ solutions as they react to changes that have already occurred—and prepare for what is to come.