A new report recently published by IFPRI highlights the point that while most African farmers perceive that there will be significant changes in rainfall and temperature due to climate change, they have done little to adapt their farming practices to these changes. The research carried out for this report was undertaken in Ethiopia and South African and 1800 households were interviewed.
The report states some of the reasons as to why adaptation has been slow: “South African farmers identified lack of access to credit as the single biggest constraint to adapting to climate change, followed by lack of water, information, and market access, and insecure property rights. In Ethiopia, farmers identified lack of land as the major obstacle, followed closely by lack of information and credit. They also noted that lack of labor, inputs, and water, as well as poor soils, prevented them from adapting.”
The research shows that farmers who did adapt where the ones who irrigated more, harvested water, planted different crops, changed planting dates, and practiced soil conservation measures, including the planting of trees. These farmers were more likely to adapt if they had access to credit and extension, owned private property, and had more farming experience or mixed crop and livestock farms. Read more