Climate Variability

Past Climate

The course of annual average temperature change for the Northern Hemisphere over the past 1,000 yr is shown in Figure 1. This is a particularly important time frame Figure 1. Northern Hemisphere average annual surface air temperature variations over the last millennium from proxy, historical and instrumental observations (IPCC, 2001a). Temperature reconstruction and instrumental data from AD 1000-1999. Smoother version of NH series and two standard error limits (gray shaded) are shown. Figure...

Features of Agriculture and Forestry in the Humid and Sub Humid Tropics

Agriculture is very important for most countries in the humid and the sub-humid tropics. Take tropical Asia as an example. In tropical Asia, agriculture is a key economic sector. In 1993, ithad employed more than half of the labor force, accounting for 10-63 of the GDP in most countries of the region (IPCC, 1998). Substantial foreign exchange earnings also are derived from exports of agricultural products. Climate-sensitive crops - such as rice, other grains and cereals, vegetables, and spices...

Future Climate Change Scenarios in the Arid and Semi Arid Tropics

The multi-century control integration of atmosphere-ocean global climate models (AOGCMs) unforced by anthropogenic changes in atmosphere composition offer an excellent opportunity to examine the skill of individual models in simulating the present-day climate and its variability on regional scales. Climate change scenarios based on an ensemble of results as inferred from skilled AOGCMs for Asia on annual and seasonal mean basis are discussed in IPCC (2001a). As a result of increases in the...

Climate of Europe

Koppens Climate Classification Map

The climate of Europe shows large differences from west (Maritime) to east (Continental) and from north (Arctic) to south (Mediterranean) (Figure 1). The climatic effects of the distribution of land and ocean are further complicated by numerous high mountain ranges which act as physical barriers to atmospheric circulation and often introduce large precipitation gradients within small regions (Frei and Schar, 1998). The studies carried out using the European long data records have shown some...

Impacts of Climate Variability and Change in the Arid and Semi Arid Tropics

As reported in IPCC (1998), stress on water availability in Asia is likely to be exacerbated by climate change. Several studies aimed at understanding the nature and magnitude of gains losses in the yield of particular crops at selected sites in Asia under elevated CO2 conditions have been reported in the literature (e.g., Luo and Lin, 1999). These studies suggest that, in general, areas in mid- and high-latitudes will experience increases in crop yield, whereas yields in areas in the lower...

Impact of Soil Management Practices on the Net GHG Fluxes

As we have discussed, several agricultural practices have great potential to increase carbon sequestration, and in some cases, decrease the net emissions of GHG. However, to date, very few field studies have been made that simultaneously examine C sequestration together with the other GHG emissions. Hence, we often have to rely on model estimates. The following analysis relies extensively on the application of the soil carbon model CENTURY Parton et al., 1993 , and on the estimation of N2O...

Adaptation Potential in the Arid and Semi Arid Tropics

Adaptation to climate change in arid and semi-arid tropics of Asian countries depends on the cost of adaptive measures, existence of appropriate institutions, access to technology, and biophysical constraints such as land and water resource availability, soil characteristics, genetic diversity for crop breeding (e.g., development of heat-resistant rice cultivars), and topography. Adaptation measures designed to anticipate the potential effects of climate change could help to offset many of the...

References

J., Mohamed, Habiballa A Hafiz, Mohammed, Ahmed Eltayeb and Gough, M. C. 2001, 'Effects of wall linings on moisture ingress into traditional grain storage pits',Int. J. Biometeorol. 45, 75-80. Abdalla, Ahmed el-Tayeb, Stigter, C. J., Gough, M. C., Mohamed, Habiballa A Hafiz and Mohammed, Ahmed Eltayeb. 2002a, 'Underground sorghum storage in cracking clay needs shallow pits, chaff linings and wide caps', Trop. Sci. 42, 57-65. Abdalla, Ahmed el-Tayeb, Kamal,...

Adaptation Strategies

Agriculture in the United States and Canada has many strong points in its favor to permit successful adaptation to climate variability and climate change. The overall production system is technically advanced and can adopt new technology rather quickly. It is regionally diverse, making adaptation to a wide range of conditions quite feasible (IPCC, 2001). The agricultural sector is highly productive, intensively managed, and market based. Further, agriculture accounts for less than 5 of the...

Forecasting for a Purpose Contextualised Forecasting

As this workshop showed, climate forecasting and its applications have matured considerably over the last few decades. There is excitement about the potential benefits our societies might reap from further research and development. Hence, this paper is titled 'Seasonal and inter-annual climate forecasting The new tool for increasing preparedness to climate variability and change in agricultural planning and operations'. We asked ourselves how 'new' are climate applications To answer this...

Additional Considerations for Improving Leisa Farming

The literature on water related examples of combating climate variability and related phenomena of environmental hazards hold a series of lessons also applicable more generally. The above examples show that traditional management technologies and innovations of all kinds are and still become locally available. They belong to the best strategies to cope with climate variability. Dissemination through government and NGO efforts is, however, very necessary because successes are not widespread...

Opportunities for Increasing Soil C Sequestration

A number of agricultural land management practices have shown potential for increasing C contentin agricultural soils (Desjardins et al., 2001b). Table I summarizes some of the results reported in the literature. These data are either based on measured or modeled values. As shown by Smith et al. (2001), a range of values are associated with most management practices. This range depends on soil texture, soil taxonomy, climatic conditions, and many other factors. The practices in Table I are...

Recommendations on Adaptations

Global surface average temperature and sea level are projected to rise under all IPCC scenarios. At the same time climate variabilility is expected to continue on seasonal to interannual and decadal time scales owing to natural variability induced by such factors as ENSO events and the IPO. These will promote increasingly stronger impacts on agriculture and forestry. The workshop produced a number of recommendations. However, presently agronomic adaptation has been effective in mid-latitude...

In North America

Hills Corn Per Hectares

Before discussing future projections, let's return to the state of Iowa and look at agricultural trends over the past century. Figures 1 and 2 presented time series of seasonal growing season temperatures and precipitation during the past century for the state of Iowa. How do they compare with corn yields for Iowa during the same period Figure 6 presents the time series for corn yields during 1895-2002 for the state of Iowa, revealing some interesting comparisons. First, there are three...

Impacts of Climate Variability on Agriculture and Forestry

Hip Metaphysial Coating

Agriculture and forestry, due to their direct dependence on climate and weather, are two of the widely studied sectors in the context of climate change. There are two aspects of climate change on agriculture firstly, the potential direct effect of increased CO2 and secondly, the potential effects of changes in temperature, precipitation. The changes in climate parameters could also have an influence on factors constraining their growth such as soil quality, pests, and diseases. Either in the...

Response of Agriculture and Forest Resources to Rising Atmospheric CO2 and Climate Change

DIRECT EFFECTS OF RISING ATMOSPHERIC CO2 Results from experimental studies have established that it is no longer realistic to examine the effects of climate change on crop and forage plants without also accounting for the direct effects of rising atmospheric CO2 at the same time. The short-term responses to elevated CO2 of isolated plants grown in artificial conditions remain difficult to extrapolate to crops in the field (Korner, 1995). Even the most realistic free-air carbon dioxide...

Conclusions

The agricultural climate of the arid and semi-arid tropical regions in Asia, Africa and Latin America is characterized by low and variable rainfall and consistently high temperatures during the growing season. Climate variability - both inter-and intra-annual - is a fact of life in these regions with a traditionally low agricultural productivity. The projected climate change and the attendant impacts on water resources and agriculture in the arid and semi-arid tropical regions add additional...

What Leisa Farmers do and may do

Climate variability and related disasters can be mitigated by temporary or permanent protective measures or by avoidance strategies that try to escape the peak values or their consequences. These are all aspects of preparedness strategies. We have indicated above that i. heavy moisture flows or the lack of water, ii. changing heat flows and related temperatures, iii. cropping seasons' climate distributions are the meteorological climatological factors we should particularly deal with in this...

Agricultures Role in Greenhouse Gas Emissions

The complex interactions become even more confusing as noted earlier by the growing concern over greenhouse gases. Warming from the natural phenomenon, characterized by warming from the atmospheric greenhouse effect, is highly beneficial to life as it exists on earth. The gases causing the warming of the atmosphere are known as greenhouse gases, including water vapor, carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), and nitrous oxide (N2O). CO2 is released to the atmosphere when solid waste, fossil fuels,...

Present Climate Variability and Change in the Arid and Semi Arid Tropics

Tropical Asia, including arid and semi-arid tropics, has a unique climatological distinction because of the pervasive influence of the monsoons. The summer southwest monsoon influences the climate of the region from May to September, and the winter northeast monsoon controls the climate from November to February. The monsoon brings most of the region's precipitation and is the most critical climatic factor in the provision of drinking water and water for rain-fed and irrigated agriculture. The...

Using Traditional Methods And Indigenous Technologies For Coping With Climate Variability

ONYEWOTU3 and MEIXURONG4 1TTMI African Network & Asian PMP Liaison Office, Wageningen University, The Netherlands E-mail kees.stigter wur.nl 2 College of Resources and Environment, China Agricultural University, Beijing, P.R. China 3TTMI-Project, Kano out-station, Forestry Research Institute of Nigeria, Kano, Nigeria 4Center for Water Resources and Conservation Technologies, Chinese Academy ofAgricultural Abstract. In agrometeorology and management of...

Introduction

In a recent review of agrometeorology in tropical Africa, Olufayo et al. (1998) stated that consequences of climate variability show themselves at any time as the effects of the accumulated weather in the current growing season compared to those of the same period in previous years. There are countless farming communities which managed to survive and, in some cases, even to thrive by exploiting natural resource bases, which their forebears have used for generations (Reijntjes et al., 1992)....

Adaptation and Applications

Agrometeorological adaptation strategies to increasing climate variability and climate change have been in focus already for a long time (Salinger et al., 2000). Adaptation should be viewed as a broad concept involving choices at national and international levels as well as locally. Adaptation involves more than measures it is also a matter for national agricultural and development policies. Under the UN Framework Convention very little attention has been given to technical adaptation. The...

Research and Development

Given the range of impacts of climate variability and projected climate change on agriculture and forestry in different regions of the world (see the section on impacts above), it is imperative that development and adoption of suitable adaptation strategies to cope with these impacts in different regions should be backed up by appropriate basic research. As Perarnaud et al. (2004) described, it is indispensable to single out two types of adaptation depending on the final user those which can be...

The References Of Climate Variability

M., and Cutforth, H. W. 1999, 'Precipitation trends on the Canadian Prairies', J. Climatic 12, 2996-3003. Bootsma, A. 1994, 'Long-term (100 YR) climatic trends for agriculture at selected locations in Canada', Clim. Change 26, 65-88. Bootsma, A. 1997, 'A review of Impacts of Climate Variability and Change on Agriculture in Atlantic Canada', in Shaw, R. W. (ed.), 1997 Climate Change and Climate Variability in Atlantic Canada, Workshop Proceedings, 3-6 December 1996,...

Conclusions and Recommendations

The adaptation of agriculture and forestry to the climate of the twenty-first century requires that major research efforts will be made. The complexity of the problem necessitates cooperation between research scientists in various disciplines meteorologists, agronomists, pedologists, hydrologists, modellers. This cooperation, which has to be international, must produce immediately useable results to respond to the questions of the developing countries. Indeed, though all regions of the world...

Environmental Pressures on Agriculture and Forest Resources

The degradation of environmental assets, especially soils, air and water, severely challenges the productivity of agriculture and forest resources (Pinstrup-Andersen and Pandya-Lorch, 1998, Price et al., 1999a,b). In the post-World War II period, approximately 23 of the world's agricultural and forestlands were classified as degraded by the United Nation's Environment Programme (Oldeman et al., 1991). Irrigated land is particularly vulnerable, although the expansion of irrigation is slowing. In...

Impact of Climate on Agriculture and Forestry in Europe

Temperature, incoming solar radiation, water and nutrient availability are the main factors that generally determine agriculture production. Biological systems are based primarily on photosynthesis, and thus dependent on incoming radiation. The potential for production determined by the radiation is greatly modified by temperature and rainfall. The main effect of temperature is to control the duration of the growth period (Long and Woodward, 1988). Moreover, also other processes linked with the...

Climate Variability

Climate variability means the alternation between the normal climate and a different, but recurrent, set of climatic conditions over a given region of the world (IPCC, 1998). Natural climate variability can produce floods, droughts, cyclones, heat waves, frosts, and other extremes in the humid and sub-humid tropics. GHG-induced climate change could further alter the frequency and magnitude of the climate extremes and associated disasters. Over the past 100 years, the amount of changes of mean...

Vulnerability of the Agricultural Sector

Rosenzweig et al. (1993) presented some interesting results based on current production and change in simulated wheat yields under GCM climate change scenarios. For the GCM doubled CO2 climate change scenario, simulated yield increases in mid- to high-latitudes were caused by the positive physiological effects of CO2 and the lengthened growing season. In contrast, decreases in simulated yields were caused by shortening of optimum growth periods due to higher temperatures, decreases moisture...

Options that Leisa Farmers have

We do no longer have to argue in favour of an increase of necessary inputs. It has been generally accepted that without such improvements of i. soil fertility and other soil conditions that are basic to sustainable farming systems, ii. soil moisture conditions, iii. varieties, crop combinations and rotations and iv. land husbandry as a whole, there is no future for successful LEISA farming (e.g. Reijntjes et al., 1992 Shaxson et al., 1997 Olufayo et al., 1998). However, such improvements must...

Technologies and Strategies

There are a number of technologies and strategies that could help reduce the vulnerability of agriculture and forestry to climate variability and climate change. Stigter et al. (2005) referred to the fact that countless farming communities managed to survive and, in some cases, even to thrive by exploiting natural resource bases which their forebears have used for generations. Through a process of innovation and adaptation, indigenous farmers have developed numerous different farming systems...

Communication Education and Training

Communicating drought information especially to remote rural populations is a major challenge for drought monitoring and prediction in Africa. Without access to reliable communication networks, the vast majority of Africa's farmers and herders do not have available the scientific and technological advances that support agricultural decision-making in richerr parts of the world. Boulahya et al. (2005) working with the African Centre of Meteorological Applications for Development (ACMAD) and...

Communications Network is Born in the Desert

The need for a drought communications system tailored to the realities of rural Africa was initially articulated to the RANET implementing partners by a nomad in the desert of southeastern Algeria as he declined the gift of a radio offered by a young meteorologist researching desert locusts near Djanet. The nomad maintained that information was vital to his survival. Just tell me where it has rained. I will know where to take my flocks. He explained that he knew every rise and fall of the...

The Ranet System

Cisco Inputs

RANET depends on four critical steps to move information from capital cities to rural communities information gathering and integration, satellite transmission, reception and interpretation, and dissemination (see Figure 1). First, scientists at the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the African Center of Meteorological Applications for Development (ACMAD), National Meteorological Services (NMSs) in Africa, and RANET partners gather vital climate, weather, and food...

RANET Information in Action

Rural communities in Niger and Uganda have begun to use the RANET system to improve dryland management, increase agricultural production, enhanced food security, and reduce vulnerability to natural disasters. The greatest benefits are realized in field sites where both the community FM radio and satellite multimedia link are functioning smoothly together, the multimedia link supplying timely drought monitoring and prediction information and FM radio supporting broad dissemination to...

Challenges and Sustainability

Challenge is as much apart of the RANET story as success. Broadly disseminating drought monitoring and prediction information to remote project sites with minimal access to support continues to present challenges in both Niger and Uganda. The main issues are maintaining equipment in working order and distributing information to a wider audience through already existing national or regional broadcasts or, where those cannot reach, via additional community radio stations or relay antennas....

Agriculture and Forestry in Europe

Europe is one of the world's largest and most productive suppliers of food and fibre it accounts for substantial outputs of both arable crops and animal products (FAOSTAT, 2001). The agriculture in Europe accounts for a small part of the total GDP and the total employment. Thus, the vulnerability of the overall economy to changes that affect agriculture is generally low (Reilly, 1996), but local effects may be large. Five major agricultural regions can be discerned in Europe as described by...

State of the Global Agriculture and Forest Sectors

Agriculture and forests account for approximately 41 of the Earth's land covers (Houghton, 1990). According to the United Nation's Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO, global exports of their commodities and services were valued at 440 billion in 1999. As noted above, unlike less managed ecosystems, the products of agriculture and forests are traded as commodities on world markets. Those products possess critical life-giving properties and are part of the Earth's life support system. There...

Agriculture as a Sensitive Indicator to Climate Change and Climate Variability

The agricultural sector is probably the most sensitive indicator of changes in general climatic conditions and in climatic variability. Agriculture can be particularly sensitive to climate anomalies. For example, crops typically grown under certain agroclimatic conditions may face large increases in yield variability due to weather extremes during the growing season. Persistent extremes, such as drought, excessively hot summers, and excessively cold winters may alter the growing season, cause...

Setting the Scene

In the tropics and sub-tropics, CV is a major source of agricultural production variability (e.g., Hammer et al., 1987 Dilley, 2000). Although most dramatic at the farm level, this effect of CV is apparent throughout entire economies and can even affect macroeconomic indicators such as international wheat prices, employment statistics or currency exchange rates (Chapman et al., 2000b White, 2000a). In October 2002, media reports in Australia attributed half of the reported inflation rate to the...

Increasing Climate Variability And Change Reducing The Vulnerability

Since time immemorial, climate variability and change have triggered natural disasters and climate extremes causing heavy losses of life and property, forcing civil society to learn to live with these calamities. Floods, droughts, hurricanes, storm surges, heat waves precipitating wild fires and such other natural calamities have claimed more than 2.8 million lives all over the world in the past 25 years, adversely affecting 828 million people. Damage caused by these climate extremes during the...

Levels and Types of Adaptation

Several typologies of adaptation to natural hazards, climate change and variability have been developed. (Burton et al., 1993 Smit et al., 2000 Smit and Pilifosova, 2001). Adaptation in a narrow sense refers only to those measures that are taken at the farm level. But in fact adaptation is a much wider concept involving choices at national and international levels as well as local. Adaptation involves more than measures, it is also a matter for national agricultural and development policy. Most...

The Role of Agricultural Soil in Influencing the GHG Budget and Their Potential for C Mitigation

According to Houghton and Hackler (2001), the net flux of carbon between the terrestrial biosphere and the atmosphere between 1850 and 1990 was 124 Pg C from deliberate changes in land cover and land use. DeFries et al. (1999) estimated that total C loss from human-induced land cover changes were almost 200 Pg C for the same period. Lal et al. (1998) estimated that agricultural soils globally have lost 40 to 50 Pg C during the last two centuries, and about 80 to 117 Pg C have been released from...

Towards New Cropping Systems

Agriculture in the twenty-first century will have to make its contribution to the reduction of GHG emissions (principally CO2, CH4, N2O) but also and above all to adapt to climate change to continue to satisfy the vital needs of populations in food, energy, fibers, and other products. The end results and priorities will depend on the regions of the Earth concerned. It is clear that the global reduction of agriculture contribution in the production of GHG will be a priority for the developed...

The 199798 El Nio Event

Depending on the manner in which it is assessed, the El Nino event of 1997-1998 might be the strongest recorded. Certainly it was of comparable magnitude to the event of 1982-1983 which brought drought to many areas surrounding the Indian Ocean and heavy rainfall to continental areas adjoining the eastern Pacific Ocean. Without doubt the 1997-1998 event was the most heralded in history, as it offered the first opportunity for modellers to test their El Nino predictions using data from the then...

Climate of North America

North America has a wide variety of climate conditions, representative of nearly all the major regions of the world. The characteristics of the climatic regimes range from the polar ice cap in the far north of Canada to subtropical conditions in the southern United States. It encompasses arid sections of the western United States to humid regions of the eastern United States. The diverse climate zones, topography, and soils support many ecological communities and supply an abundance of...