BIO-CLIMAPATHS


Title                           Assessing climate-led social-ecological impacts and opportunities for resilient pathways in the EU bioeconomy

Lead PI                      Irene Monasterolo, Vienna University of Economics & Business, Austria

Partner PI                  Prajal Pradhan, Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), Germany
                                   Sebastian Poledna, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, Risk and Resilience, Advanced
                                   Systems Analysis, Austria
                                   Patricia Fuentes Saguar, Pablo de Olavide University, Spain

Funding Agencies    FFG, Austria
                                   BMBF, Germany
                                   AEI, Spain

Abstract

The EU is in the process of developing and implementing bioeconomy strategies to foster the transition from a fossil fuel-based to a renewable, biobased economy. Nevertheless, a more direct dependency of economic value chains on the provisioning function of ecosystems increases the socioeconomic system’s vulnerability to climate hazards. Hence, innovative, interdisciplinary approaches are needed to assess different climate hazard related, cross-sectoral impacts in society. In particular, there is a need to assess climate-led resilience pathways that account for socio-economic factors, including direct losses, indirect distributive effects and the role of finance.
 
Filling in a major knowledge gap, BIOCLIMAPATHS develops the first interdisciplinary methodological framework that contains the whole logic flow of the knowledge development process based on:
1. A novel databases of cross-sectoral climate risks that allow to map spatially explicit climate hazards’ impact of the biophysical dimension (biomass losses) in the bioeconomy;
2. Advances the state of the art in bioeconomy sector modeling to disclose the channels of climate risks’ transmission across interdependent biophysical, economic and financial systems at the subnational level with an ABM, integrated in a global input-output framework;
3. Identification of co-produced resilience solutions based on the assessment of challenges and opportunities for sustainable, inclusive and climate-resilient development in the EU under different bioeconomy pathways (food, materials and energy).
 
BIOCLIMAPATHS’ added value stands in exploiting knowledge co-production within a novel network of interdisciplinary research teams from Austria, Germany and Spain, and non-academic stakeholders. Our aim is to deliver a breakthrough methodological approach based on qualitative stakeholder inputs and quantitative modeling advancements. Five urgent research questions will be addressed:
- What are hotspots of climate hazard risk in the EU and to what extent are they related to the bioeconomy?
- How are food and non-food bioeconomy sectors affected by climate hazard hotspots under different climate scenarios in the EU, and what are its global biomass supply and use implications?
- To what extent are households, farmers, firms and financial agents affected by climate hazard induced price shocks stemming from food and non-food bioeconomy sectors?
- Under which conditions could distributive effects (inequality) among households emerge and mitigated in the social system?
- How is socio-economic and social-ecological resilience, in particular food, climate and economic security, affected in different bioeconomy transition paths subject to climate hazards? 
 
BIOCLIMAPATHS will provide policy-relevant information and recommendations to a variety of academic and non-academic stakeholders as regards strategies and resilient pathways to achieve the EU2030 climate and energy targets with a bioeconomy approach.