Improved crop modelling for supporting policy design on climate change impacts, adaptation and mitigation — CropM in MACSUR



  • Climate change conditions the resource base upon which agricultural production is based, and, as such, it as such also severely impacts the ecosystem services delivered by agricultural production systems. Therefore, climate change considerations are relevant for most of the agriculture-related policies, including the Common Agricultural Policy, the Climate Change Policy, and environmental protection policies such as the Water Framework, Groundwater, and Habitat directives. These policies will require relevant changes in the near future because of how climate change will interact with agricultural production systems, and the FACCE-JPI knowledge hub MACSUR provides some of the knowledge base on which to build such policy changes.
  • Assessing climate change impacts and adaptation and mitigation options in European agriculture requires the use of a range of models (crop, livestock, economic) and the integration of their results. By joining the work of many (> 40) European research groups in MACSUR, substantial progress in improving and applying models for assessing climate change impacts and adaptations in crop production has been made that can effectively assist policy design and recommendations. The results from such MACSUR research formed part of the scientific bedrock of the COP21 agreement in Paris in 2015. Without MACSUR, the significant European agricultural contribution to the IPCC and UNFCCC would not have been evident.
  • Areas of progress include the use of crop model ensembles, improved scaling methods, better uncertainty assessment, data generation and model improvements for better capturing effects of extreme and adverse weather, development of context-sensitive adaptive strategies. These efforts have led to robust assessments of climate change impact on crop production and associated effects on ecosystems.
  • The crop modelling community is now ready for conducting a comprehensive assessment of climate change impacts, and to identify adaptation and mitigation options for Europe at multiple scales, in order to play an active role for shaping future European agricultural, environmental and climate policies.


CropM, policy brief, crop modelling, climate change, research gaps

Full Text:

Policy Brief (PDF)


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