Edited by Lucy Holt
Irregular climatic variations are a major problem for agricultural production. However, knowledge on weather patterns can allow for the development of seasonal management strategies that account for weather patterns, even as they oscillate. Ultimately, this helps to secure farmers livelihoods.
There are many ways of producing this knowledge. In Senegal, the CGIAR Research Programme on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) has paired local farmers with meteorologists to show the combination of indigenous knowledge and scientific knowledge can equal more than the sum of its parts.
Now, in the Andes, CCAFS has teamed up with International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), the National Institute for Space Research (INPE), Brazil, and Colombia´s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MADR), to found the project: Seasonal climate forecasts for agricultural crop and risk management. Read more »
by Sarah McKune and Chesney McOmber
In a world that is rapidly becoming more connected through the internet, mobile phones and other Information Communication Technologies (ICTs), climate information has a new potential to reach farmers in rural communities worldwide and make a significant difference in their ability to successfully adapt to their changing environment.
However, despite the great potential of emerging communication technologies, the question remains whether those farmers who are most vulnerable to environmental shocks are able to access and utilize the tools to effectively manage the associated risk. Read more »
by Alexa Jay and James Hansen
Our research theme, Adaptation through managing climate risk, is leading efforts to build the resilience of agriculture and food systems to a variable and changing climate. From the field level to government policy, efforts to reduce the impacts of climate risk on food security depend increasingly on information and knowledge. Improving climate-related information and connecting it to those who need it is a vital part of our work.
In an increasingly uncertain climate, climate information and advisory services can help farmers better manage risk and take advantage of favorable climate conditions. Climate services are receiving increasing attention among development organizations as a way to support climate change adaptation and immediate development goals. Read more »
by Vanessa Meadu and Cecilia Schubert
Knowledge is power when it comes fighting hunger, food insecurity and climate injustice. This is one of the core premises at the Hunger, Nutrition, Climate Justice conference which kicks off today in Dublin, Ireland. As one of the conference co-organisers, the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) wants to showcase how scientific and indigenous knowledge are being mobilised for positive change.
In Senegal, CCAFS and partners including the Senegalese National Meteorological Agency, the Agriculture Extension Service, and many farmers groups, have developed an innovative and exciting approach to reduce the risks that farmers face as the climate becomes more and more variable: put climate information into farmers hands. Farmers have been involved in every step of the way, helping meteorologists and other specialists package and communicate the information in a way that is truly useful.
Blog story: Putting climate forecasts into farmers' hands, 25 July 2011
Blog story: Following up on last year’s climate forecast workshop – what happened next? 27 February 2012
The CCAFS team is reporting live from the Hunger, Nutrition, Climate Justice conference in Dublin from 15-16 April 2013. Watch live webcasts at www.eu2013.ie and follow updates on the CCAFS blog. Engage with us on twitter @cgiarclimate using #HNCJ.
by Arame Tall
”If we are to be successful in going from research to practice, it is important to keep farmers at the centre. This ranges from the design and delivery, to the evaluation of the participatory project.” This said climate scientist Arame Tall at a recently held side event at the Conference on Climate Smart Agriculture in Davis, California.
The session discussed ways to increase the likelihood that research will influence changes in policies, institutions and technologies. Read more about the session on the theme "Linking knowledge with Action" in our first blog story ”Turning research into actions that matter.”
This story continues on the same topic, further investigating key aspects of research projects that will increase the likelihood that the research we conduct is transformed into actions on the ground. Read more »
by Patricia Moreno and Carlos Navarro
During the last days of February of this year, a training was carried out in the facilities of the Mozambique Agricultural Research Institute (IIAM) in Maputo, Mozambique. The training covered the use of the ECOCROP model, a tool to evaluate crop suitability in both current and future climates. Sessions were a part of a collaborative effort between us and IIAM, on a project entitled "Managing climate related risks to improve livelihood resilience and adaptive capacity in agricultural ecosystems in Southern Mozambique." Read more »
By Alexa Jay
We know that smallholder farmers in the developing world are particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate fluctuations and weather extremes. In the face of a more uncertain climate, effective climate information and advisory services have great potential to help farmers make decisions regarding their farms. Climate information also offer potential to improve the management of climate-related risk within an agricultural context and help farmers adapt to change.
Climate services for agriculture and other sectors are receiving increasing attention globally. As a sponsoring partner of the Climate Services Partnership (CSP), our research theme Adapting through managing climate risk is playing a key role in making climate information services work better for smallholder farmers.
by Vanessa Meadu
How do we feed two billion more people with less water under changing climate? Professor Colin Chartres and colleagues challenged those of us at the Global Science Conference on Climate Smart Agriculture to think about this paradox.
The conference, hosted by University of California Davis, has gathered the world's top researchers on climate change and food security to share solutions and innovations, and map out a path forward for a food-secure future. Water is a major concern. Read more »
by Wilco Terink, Futurewater
Crop growth models play a major role in sustaining the world-wide food security. These models are used to simulate crop growth during the growing season, and the final crop yield at the end of the growing season, given the farmers’ management practices. At a more strategic level, these crop growth models play an important role to decision makers to take timely decisions regarding food import and export strategies.
The simulation accuracy of crop growth models relies on the quality of the input data. Since crop yield forecasting applications are often applied over large areas that rely on a spatially distributed crop growth model, the uncertainty in the spatial variation of the input data increases. Read more »
By Bruce Campbell
Farmers have been at the forefront of changes and “shocks” since time immemorial, so are well placed to counter climate change. However, “coping” is insufficient if food security is to be achieved. Farmers need to know what kind of season is coming, and thus what and when to plant. They need to know about the outbreak of new pests and diseases. On the longer term, they need to know whether a shift in crop species or different farming strategies are needed. A cornerstone of active adaptation is information availability: varieties to grow, diversification options, seasonal climate forecasts, flood and cyclone warnings, pest and disease outbreaks, market options.
CCAFS Coordinating Unit - University of Copenhagen, Faculty of Science, Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, Rolighedsvej 21, DK-1958 Frederiksberg C, Denmark, phone +45 35331046; Email ccafs [at] cgiar [dot] org, EAN 5790000279012
Lead Center - International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT)