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Barnett & O’Neill (2010). Maladaptation

Bibliographic details:

Barnett, J., & O’Neill, S. (2010). Maladaptation. Global environmental change, 2(20), 211-213



This paper argues that some degree of climate change is now inevitable, and so therefore is the need for responses to avoid its likely impacts. There are at least five distinct types or pathways through which maladaptation arises; namely actions that, relative to alternatives: increase emissions of greenhouse gases, disproportionately burden the most vulnerable, have high opportunity costs, reduce incentives to adapt, and set paths that limit the choices available to future generations. In order to show how these are manifest in practice, the authors explain these with reference to decisions to (mal)adapt to water stress in Melbourne.