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Agricultural vulnerability and large-scale adaptation efforts in Mexico

Authors: Matthew LaFevor*, University of Alabama
Topics: Agricultural Geography, Food Systems, Water Resources and Hydrology
Keywords: agriculture, vulnerability, adaptation, water, Mexico
Session Type: Paper
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


This paper examines large-scale efforts to build adaptive capacity on Mexican farms through investments in cross-slope earthworks, a form of soil and water conservation (SWC) designed to mitigate hydroclimatic stressors on rainfed systems. It synthesizes data from the country's federal program for sustainable agriculture, integrating these data with indices of biophysical, social, and spatial characteristics of 2455 municipalities. Spatial and statistical analyses reveal that, on the whole, investment programs did not effectively target vulnerability priority areas. Discussion focuses on the role of adaptation programs in addressing the hydroclimatic vulnerabilities of rainfed systems, where large-scale efforts may be succeeding or failing, and how we can improve the spatial targeting of agricultural systems and societies most susceptible to environmental change.

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