The water cycle, a fundamental component of climate, is likely to be altered in important ways by climate change. Climate change will most likely worsen the already existing water related problems.
Then the question is how should policy makers respond to this dilemma.
Climate change mitigation, through greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction and sequestration is not a sufficient response.
Adaptation will also need to feature as a response strategy.
Mitigation and adaptation need to be viewed as complementary responses to climate change.
Complementarity between adaptation and mitigation in the water sector will be addressed in this paper.
The paper will also outline the main impacts of climate change on water resources and identify those areas that are most dependent and vulnerable to hydrological systems (e.g., hydroelectric systems, irrigation, agriculture) and any changes thereof resulting from climate change.
It will aim to assess the impact of water demand and water use, with a view to identifying the main relationships between mitigation and adaptation in the water sector and the means through which individual mitigation and adaptation actions can potentially interact with each other for the benefit of the water sector as a whole. It will also explore the implications of climate change on the management of water resources.
Adaptation and mitigation options would be considered in the context of their socio-economic and environmental impacts and their contribution to sustainable development.
A brief evaluation of how this information can be directly used for planning purpose will also be presented.