American University of Beirut

​​​​Climate change, agriculture, & livelihoods in Lebanon: Consolidated livelihoods exercise for analyzing resilience

​​​​​​To ensure targeted and efficient climate change adaptation action, WFP Lebanon commissioned AUB-IFI to conduct a study to generate additional evidence on the impact of climate change and climate variability on agricultural production and rural communities.Lebanon is highly susceptible to the impact of climate change now and in the future. This is particularly true for rural areas and farming-reliant communities, where livelihoods revolve around agricultural production. 

The study adapts and applies the WFP’s Consolidated Livelihood Exercise for Analyzing Resilience (CLEAR) methodology relying on extensive desk-research and stakeholder consultations at the national and sub-national levels. It maps the country according to livelihoods, enabling programming that takes people’s livelihoods, and not administrative areas, as the point of departure. It provides a novel approach to understanding the negative effects of climate change on agricultural production and farmingreliant communities in Lebanon and serves to inform strategy and programme development for multiple stakeholders and facilitators of CCA at different levels of government, within relevant ministries, and for UN agencies and specialized organizations working within the field. As such, the study is an instrument for policy makers and practitioners to design and implement urgent interventions to address the negative effects of long-term, gradual climate risks on agriculture and livelihoods.

This document is an executive summary of the technical CLEAR study report. The study shows how climate change resilience levels are particularly low in the North, Akkar, and parts of the Bekaa. In addition, projections show that already vulnerable areas will be at high risk in the future but also that some currently moderately resilient areas will face problems managing the effects of climate change in the years to come. The apparent adverse effects of climate change on rural livelihoods must be addressed by various stakeholders and solutions must be tailored to respond effectively to the specific attributes of the different livelihood zones. It is recommended, that investments are made at the policy level as well as targeting communities, farmers, and vulnerable individuals directly. As such, interventions should ensure capacity-building and technology transfer programs targeting farmers, skills building for livelihood diversification, improved extension services, reduction of land degradation through climate smart agriculture, changed afforestation and reforestation policies, improved and easier access to markets for farmers, support for the utilization of smart irrigation and improved farm irrigation management, expansion of irrigation schemes, and control of groundwater access.​​​

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