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The name field is required. Please enter your name. The E-mail message field is required. Please enter the message. Please verify that you are not a robot. Would you also like to submit a review for this item? You already recently rated this item. Your rating has been recorded. Write a review Rate this item: Preview this item Preview this item. English View all editions and formats Summary: Since anthropogenic factors are mainly to blame for the current trends in global warming, human intervention will be necessary to mitigate it. With 17 authoritative chapters, Combating Climate Change: An Agricultural Perspective outlines a framework for preparing agriculture for climate change, presenting the causes and consequences of climate change and possible remediation measures.

With contributions from internationally recognized scientists, the chapters cover global food security, adaptation of agriculture to fulfill its greenhouse gas emissions mitigation potential, economic aspects of climate change, the soil organic carbon pool, the need for agroecological intelligence, and the development of nutrient-use-efficient crops.

The text also addresses genetic mitigation of climate change effects through the development of climate-resilient crops and the use of genetic and genomic resources to develop highly productive crop cultivars, as well as the conservation of native agroecosystems. Expert contributors discuss the impacts of climate change on plant pathogens and plant disease as well as on insects and crop losses. They address abiotic stress resistance, conservation tillage as a mitigation strategy, and more.

Covering a broad range of issues related to climate change and agriculture, this book brings together ideas for environmentally friendly technologies and opportunities to further increase and stabilize global agricultural productivity and ensure food security in face of mounting climate challenge"-- "In a single volume, this book asssembles causes and consequences of climate change, and possible remedial measures. Allow this favorite library to be seen by others Keep this favorite library private.

Find a copy in the library Finding libraries that hold this item Electronic books Additional Physical Format: Document, Internet resource Document Type: It is intended for agricultural practitioners, as they devise innovative environment-friendly technologies to materialize a climate-resilient agriculture, as well as serving students, teachers, researchers, and policy makers, as a ready desktop reference on climate change-related agricultural issues" Publisher Synopsis "Experts consider plant pathogens, plant disease, insects and more as they consider the latest options for handling future climates.

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3 ways farmers can combat climate change

In the longer term these will impact on carbon assimilation and thus growth rates and eventual yield. The impact of high temperatures on final yield can depend on the stage of crop development. However, high temperatures during the vegetative stage did not seem to have significant effects on growth and development. Rice grain sterility is brought on by temperatures in the mids and similar temperatures can lead to the reverse of the vernalizing effects of cold temperatures in wheat.

Events which today are considered extreme would be less unusual in the future. The impacts of extreme temperature events can be difficult to separate from those of drought. However, key temperature thresholds exist beyond which crop physiology is altered, potentially devastating yields. The two projections are the members of the ensemble with the greatest and least change averaged over all global croplands.

There are a number of definitions of drought, which generally reflect different perspectives. Thus definitions should be region-specific and impact- or application-specific in order to be used in an operational mode by decision makers. Global mean PDSI has also increased IPCC , and a comparison of climate model simulations with observed data suggests that anthropogenic increases in greenhouse gas and aerosol concentrations have made a detectable contribution to the observed drying trend in PDSI Burke et al.

In climate-modelling studies, Burke et al. Therefore at any given time, approximately 20 per cent of the land surface will be defined as being in drought, but the conditions in a normally wet area under drought may still be less dry than those in another region which is dry under normal conditions. Using this definition, the MOHC climate model simulates the proportion of the land surface under drought to have increased from 20 to 28 per cent over the twentieth century Burke et al.

Using national-scale data for the four major grains barley, maize, rice and wheat , Li et al. Present-day mean YRR values are diagnosed as ranging from 5. By assuming the linear relationship between the drought risk index and YRR holds into the future, Li et al. The impacts of drought may offset benefits of increased temperature and season length observed at mid to high latitudes. Using models of global climate, crop production and water resources, Alcamo et al. However, their results indicate that the frequency of food production shortfalls could double in many of the main crop growing areas in the s, and triple in the s Alcamo et al.

Although water availability in Russia is increasing on average, the water resources model predicted more frequent low run-off events in the already dry crop growing regions in the south, and a significantly increased frequency of high run-off events in much of central Russia Alcamo et al. Food production can also be impacted by too much water. Heavy rainfall events leading to flooding can wipe out entire crops over wide areas, and excess water can also lead to other impacts including soil water logging, anaerobicity and reduced plant growth.

Agricultural machinery may simply not be adapted to wet soil conditions. In a study looking at the impacts of current climate variability, Kettlewell et al. This was shown to affect the quality of the subsequent products such that it influenced the amount of milling wheat that was exported from the UK.

The proportion of total rain falling in heavy rainfall events appears to be increasing, and this trend is expected to continue as the climate continues to warm. A doubling of CO 2 is projected to lead to an increase in intense rainfall over much of Europe. A tropical cyclone is the generic term for a non-frontal synoptic scale low-pressure system over tropical or sub-tropical waters with organized convection i. The strongest tropical cyclones can reach wind speeds as large as mph, as recorded in Typhoon Tip in the western North Pacific in October Tropical cyclones usually occur during the summer and early autumn: The North Indian Ocean is the only basin to have a two-part tropical cyclone season: Observed tropical cyclone tracks and intensity for all known storms over the period — Both societal and economic implications of tropical cyclones can be high, particularly in developing countries with high population growth rates in vulnerable tropical and subtropical regions.

This is particularly the case in the North Indian Ocean, where the most vulnerable people live in the river deltas of Myanmar, Bangladesh, India and Pakistan; here population growth has resulted in increased farming in coastal regions most at risk from flooding Webster In , cyclone Sidr hit Bangladesh costing lives United Nations , and in cyclone Nargis caused deaths in Myanmar. Although many studies focus on the negative impacts, tropical cyclones can also bring benefits.

In many arid regions in the tropics, a large portion of the annual rain comes from cyclones. Examples of such storms are hurricane Gabrielle and tropical storm Fay , which provided temporary relief from the — and — droughts, respectively. As much as 15 inches of rainfall was recorded in some regions from tropical storm Fay, without which, regions would have faced extreme water shortage, wildfires and potential saltwater intrusion into coastal freshwater aquifers Abtew et al.

Tropical cyclones can also help replenish water supplies to inland regions: There is much debate on the global change in tropical cyclone frequency and intensity under a warming climate. Climate modelling studies contributing to the IPCC's Fourth Assessment Report AR4 suggest tropical cyclones may become more intense in the future with stronger winds and heavier precipitation Meehl et al.

This is in agreement with more recent studies using high resolution models, which also indicate a possible decrease in future global tropical cyclone frequency McDonald et al. However, there is limited consensus among the models on the regional variations in tropical cyclone frequency.

Rising atmospheric CO 2 and climate change may also impact indirectly on crops through effects on pests and disease. These interactions are complex and as yet the full implications in terms of crop yield are uncertain.


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Increased temperatures also reduced the overwintering mortality of aphids enabling earlier and potentially more widespread dispersion Zhou et al. Pathogens and disease may also be affected by a changing climate.

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This may be through impacts of warming or drought on the resistance of crops to specific diseases and through the increased pathogenicity of organisms by mutation induced by environmental stress Gregory et al. Over the next 10—20 years, disease affecting oilseed rape could increase in severity within its existing range as well as spread to more northern regions where at present it is not observed Evans et al.

Changes in climate variability may also be significant, affecting the predictability and amplitude of outbreaks. Climate changes remote from production areas may also be critical. For example, agriculture along the Nile in Egypt depends on rainfall in the upper reaches of the Nile such as the Ethiopian Highlands.

In some rivers such as the Nile, climate change increases flow throughout the year which could confer benefits to agriculture. However, in other catchments, e. However, dry season river-flow is still very low. Without sufficient storage of peak season flow, water scarcity may affect agricultural productivity despite overall increases in annual water availability.

Increases at peak flow may also cause damage to crop lands through flooding. Projections are bias corrected ensemble means from the Hadley Centre models. These areas are mostly at mid to high latitudes where predictions for warming are greatest. Warming in winter means that less precipitation falls as snow and that which accumulates melts earlier in the year. Changing patterns of snow cover fundamentally alter how such systems store and release water. Changes in the amount of precipitation affect the volume of run-off, particularly near the end of the winter at the onset of snow melt.

Temperature changes mostly affect the timing of run-off with earlier peak flow in the spring. Although additional river-flow can be considered beneficial to agriculture this is only true if there is an ability to store run-off during times of excess to use later in the growing season.

Globally, only a few rivers currently have adequate storage to cope with large shifts in seasonality of run-off Barnett et al. Where storage capacities are not sufficient, much of the winter run-off will immediately be lost to the oceans. It shows an earlier and increased peak flow around snow melt with subsequently lower flow later in the year. The fraction of run-off originating as snowfall. The red lines indicate the regions where streamflow is snowmelt-dominated, and where there is not adequate reservoir storage capacity to buffer shifts in the seasonal hydrograph.

The black lines indicate additional areas where water availability is predominantly influenced by snowmelt generated upstream but run-off generated within these areas is not snowmelt-dominated. Reproduced from Barnett et al. Some major rivers, such as the Indus and Ganges, are fed by mountain glaciers, with approximately one-sixth of the world's population currently living in glacier-fed river basins Stern Populations are projected to rise significantly in major glacier-fed river basins such as the Indo-Gangetic plain. As such, changes in remote precipitation and the magnitude and seasonality of glacial melt waters could therefore potentially impact food production for many people.

The majority of observed glaciers around the globe are undergoing shrinkage Zemp et al. Formerly attributing this retreat to recent warming is not currently possible. However, there is a broad consensus that warming is a primary cause of retreat, although changes in atmospheric moisture particularly in the tropics may be contributing Bates et al. Melting glaciers will initially increase river-flow although the seasonality of flow will be enhanced Juen et al.

In the long term, glacial retreat is expected to be enhanced further leading to eventual decline in run-off, although the greater time scale of this decline is uncertain. The Chinese Glacier Inventory catalogued 46 glaciers in western China, with approximately 15 glaciers in the Himalayas. In total these glaciers store an estimated 12 km 3 of fresh water Ding et al. Analysis of glaciers in the western Himalayas demonstrates evidence of glacial thinning Berthier et al.

The limited number of direct observations also supports evidence of a glacial retreat in the Himalayas Zemp et al.

3 ways farmers can combat climate change | World Economic Forum

The water from these glaciers feeds large rivers such as the Indus, Ganges and Brahmaputra and is likely to be contributing a significant proportion of seasonal river flow although the exact magnitude is unknown. Currently nearly million people are reliant on these rivers for domestic and agricultural water resources. Climate change may mean the Indus and Ganges become increasingly seasonal rivers, ceasing to flow during the dry season Kehrwald et al. Combined with a rising population this means that water scarcity in the region would be expected to increase in the future.

Sea-level rise is an inevitable consequence of a warming climate owing to a combination of thermal expansion of the existing mass of ocean water and addition of extra water owing to the melting of land ice. This can be expected to eventually cause inundation of coastal land, especially where the capacity for introduction or modification of sea defences is relatively low or non-existent. Regarding crop productivity, vulnerability is clearly greatest where large sea-level rise occurs in conjunction with low-lying coastal agriculture.

Many major river deltas provide important agricultural land owing to the fertility of fluvial soils, and many small island states are also low-lying. Increases in mean sea level threaten to inundate agricultural lands and salinize groundwater in the coming decades to centuries, although the largest impacts may not be seen for many centuries owing to the time required to melt large ice sheets and for warming to penetrate into the deep ocean.

Due to the possible rate of discharge of these ice sheets, and past maximal sea-level rise under similar climatic conditions a maximum eustatic sea-level rise of approximately 2 m by is considered physically plausible, but very unlikely Pfeffer et al. Short-lived storm surges can also cause great devastation, even if land is not permanently lost.

There has been relatively little work assessing the impacts of either mean sea-level rise or storm surges on agriculture. As well as influencing climate through radiative forcing, increasing atmospheric CO 2 concentrations can also directly affect plant physiological processes of photosynthesis and transpiration Field et al. Therefore any assessment of the impacts of CO 2 -induced climate change on crop productivity should account for the modification of the climate impact by the CO 2 physiological impact. The CO 2 physiological response varies between species, and in particular, two different pathways of photosynthesis named C 3 and C 4 have evolved and these affect the overall response.

The difference lies in whether ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase—oxygenase RuBisCO within the plant cells is saturated by CO 2 or not. The RuBisCO enzyme is highly conserved in plants and as such it is thought that the response of all C 3 crops including wheat and soya beans will be comparable. Theoretical estimates suggest that increasing atmospheric CO 2 concentrations to ppm, could increase photosynthesis in such C 3 crops by nearly 40 per cent Long et al.

The physiology of C 4 crops, such as maize, millet, sorghum and sugarcane is different. Thus, rising CO 2 concentrations confer no additional physiological benefits. These crops may, however, become more water-use efficient at elevated CO 2 concentrations as stomata do not need to stay open as long for the plant to receive the required CO 2.

Thus yields may increase marginally as a result Long et al. Many studies suggest that yield rises owing to this CO 2 -fertilization effect and these results are consistent across a range of experimental approaches including controlled environment closed chambers, greenhouse, open and closed field top chambers, and free-air carbon dioxide enrichment FACE experiments Tubiello et al. Some authors argue that crop response to elevated CO 2 may be lower than previously thought, with consequences for crop modelling and projections of food supply Long et al. Plant physiologists and modellers alike recognize that the effects of elevated CO 2 , as measured in experimental settings and subsequently implemented in models, may overestimate actual field and farm level responses.


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  8. This is because of many limiting factors such as pests and weeds, nutrients, competition for resources, soil water and air quality which are neither well understood at large scales, nor well implemented in leading models. Despite the potential positive effects on yield quantities, elevated CO 2 may, however, be detrimental to yield quality of certain crops. For example, elevated CO 2 is detrimental to wheat flour quality through reductions in protein content Sinclair et al. Without CO 2 fertilization, many regions, especially in the low latitudes, suffer a decrease in productivity by In contrast, by including CO 2 fertilization all but the very driest regions show increases in productivity.

    The two projections show the impact of including CO 2 physiological effects and are the members of the ensemble with the most positive and negative changes in productivity averaged over all global croplands. Global-scale comparisons of the impacts of CO 2 fertilization with those of changes in mean climate Parry et al. However, regions such as Africa and India are nevertheless still projected to experience up to 5 per cent losses by , even with strong CO 2 fertilization. These losses increase to up to 30 per cent if the effects of CO 2 fertilization are omitted.

    In fact without CO 2 fertilization all regions are projected to experience a loss in productivity owing to climate change by However, existing global scale studies Parry et al. Reproduced from Parry et al. A reduction in CO 2 emissions would be expected to reduce the positive effect of CO 2 fertilization on crop yields more rapidly than it would mitigate the negative impacts of climate change.

    Stabilization of CO 2 concentrations would therefore halt any increase in the impacts of CO 2 fertilization, while the impacts of climate change could still continue to grow. Therefore in the short term the impacts on global food production could be negative. However, estimates suggest that stabilizing CO 2 concentrations at ppm would significantly reduce production losses by the end of the century Arnell et al.

    For all species higher water-use efficiencies and greater root densities under elevated CO 2 in field systems may, in some cases, alleviate drought pressures, yet their large-scale implications are not well understood Wullschleger et al. This could offset some of the expected warming-induced increase in evaporative demand, thus easing the pressure for more irrigation water. Soil moisture and run-off may be more relevant than precipitation and meteorological drought indices as metrics of water resource availability, as these represent the water actually available for agricultural use.

    These quantities are routinely simulated by physically based climate models as a necessary component of the hydrological cycle. Importantly, the scenarios with an increase in mean run-off and the greatest increase in available soil moisture included the effects of CO 2 fertilization in the model, while those with a decrease in mean run-off and the smallest increase in soil moisture availability did not include this effect Betts et al.

    Two projections of future change in soil moisture as a fraction of that required to prevent plant water stress over global croplands for year means centred around and , relative to — Positive values indicate increased water availability. The two projections are the members of the ensemble with the most positive and negative changes in annual mean run-off averaged over all global croplands. Two projections of percentage change in time spent under meteorological drought as defined in terms of soil moisture in global croplands for year means centred around and , relative to The two projections are the members of the ensemble with the greatest and least percentage change averaged over all global croplands.

    Ozone is a major secondary air-pollutant, which at current concentrations has been shown to have significant negative impacts on crop yields Van Dingenen et al. Whereas in North America and Europe, emissions of ozone precursors are decreasing, in other regions of the world, especially Asia, they are increasing rapidly Van Dingenen et al. Ozone reduces agricultural yield through several mechanisms. Firstly, acute and visible injury to products such as horticultural crops reduces market value.

    Secondly, ozone reduces photosynthetic rates and accelerates leaf senescence which in turn impacts on final yield. In Europe and North America many studies have investigated such yield reductions e.