Adaptation with climate uncertainty: An examination of agricultural land use in the United States Academic Article uri icon


  • 2018 Elsevier Ltd This paper examines adaptation responses to climate change through adjustment of agricultural land use. The climate drivers we examine are changes in long-term climate normals (e.g., 10-year moving averages) and changes in inter-annual climate variability. Using US county level data over 1982 to 2012 from Census of Agriculture, we find that impacts of long-term climate normals are as important as that of inter-annual climate variability. Projecting into the future, we find projected climate change will lead to an expansion in crop land share across the northern and interior western United States with decreases in the south. We also find that grazing land share increases in southern regions and Inland Pacific Northwest and declines in the northern areas. However, the extent to which the adaptation potential would be is dependent on the climate model, emission scenario and time horizon under consideration.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Mu, J. E., McCarl, B. A., Sleeter, B., Abatzoglou, J. T., & Zhang, H.

citation count

  • 13

complete list of authors

  • Mu, Jianhong E||McCarl, Bruce A||Sleeter, Benjamin||Abatzoglou, John T||Zhang, Hongliang

publication date

  • September 2018