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It's raining, it's pouring, it's time to be adapting: report of the second AIACC regional workshop for Latin America and the Caribbean

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This paper summarises the second assessment of impacts and Adaptations to Climate Change (AIACC) regional workshop for Latin America and the Caribbean in Buenos Aires on 24 – 27 August 2004. The workshop brought together investigators from six AIACC assessments in Central and South America, Mexico and the Caribbean, participants of other regional assessments, public and private sector stakeholders, and members of the policy and scientific communities of the region and beyond.The primary messages that emerged from the meeting suggest that, as it enters its second decade, the Convention should give greater emphasis to adaptation and to building the capacity, partnerships and knowledge that are needed to support adaptation. The conference's primary conclusions include:that the climate is changing; the causes of the observed precipitation trends are not yet determined and are being investigated, but they may be related in part to human-induced climate changefurther warming and precipitation changes are projected for coming decadesclimate risks are widespread in Latin America and the Caribbeanadaptation is needed now. Societies are less well adapted to present climate variability and climate extremes than they might be, resulting in substantial climate related lossesadaptation to climate change should be integrated with development policiesadvances in knowledge about climate change vulnerability and adaptation continue to be neededimportant scientific and technical capacities exist in Latin America and the Caribbean, but further investments in capacity and regional cooperation are requiredpartnerships among policy, practitioner, stakeholder and science communities are needed for effective adaptation; mobilising and sustaining these partnerships are important for building adaptation capacity.A final conclusion was that the AIACC is filling an important role in advancing knowledge, capacity and networks that complement other efforts in Latin America and the Caribbean. Future activities that build upon the AIACC work should pursue these same general objectives but with an increasing emphasis on supporting adaptation planning and actions to manage climate risks.