ESPA is a seven year, £40 million research programme funded by DFID, ESRC and NERC to provide new knowledge demonstrating how ecosystem services can reduce poverty and enhance well-being for the world’s poor. Learn More »


Sugarcane grown for biofuels has proved very lucrative for Brazil, but will its cultivation in Ghana’s dry climate be equally successful? This project produced the world’s first study of the impact of climate change on biofuels. Its combined modelling approach shows that, provided sufficient water is available, sugarcane cultivation is sustainable at around three quarters of yields from Brazil - even if CO2 concentrations are doubled and temperatures rise by 4oC. The framework is currently informing the development of index insurance products by identifying weather indices that encapsulate environmental and economic vulnerabilities.

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