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Impact of climate change on agriculture in Africa by 2030

Author: Josephine Khaoma W. Ngaira
Organisation: School of Environment and Earth Sciences, Maseno University, Kenya
Publish Date: June 2007
Country: Africa
Sector: Environment
Method: Forecasting
Theme: Climate Change
Type: Article
Language: English
Tags: Environmental impacts, Carbon dioxide sink, Marginal agriculture, Sahelian drought, Human activities
Concerns about climate change are global and real. As all communities try to get adapted to the challenges of their local climate, they are today sensitive to its variations. Third World countries, particularly Africa are threatened by the predicted effects of climate change because of their economic dependence on climate for development whose backbone is griculture. There is strong evidence from the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) that the observed increases in greenhouse gases particularly Carbon dioxide (CO2) may lead to global warming, sea level rise and space-time changes in climatic zones and seasons on the globe. To come up with climate change associated impacts on agriculture in Africa, the study evaluated climate related researches conducted on snow capped mountains in Africa (Mt Kilimanjaro), fishing in inland lakes (Lake Victoria, Baringo), Agriculture in the Semi-arid lands of East Africa and irrigation projects in Africa (Gezira in Egypt) It was established that
Africa is already experiencing the devastating impacts of climate change as seen in frequent floods and droughts and shift in marginal agricultural systems. If the predicted temperature increase of 4.5 degrees centigrade is realized by the year 2030, then agricultural systems in Africa will be seriously affected particularly the food security section. There will be reduced land for agriculture because the high agricultural potential areas will become arid, Coastal areas will be submerged, affecting fishing and human settlement, there will be increased desertification and disappearance of ice and snow on the mountains. The effects of climate change may include: reduced agricultural land use due to submergence of coastal regions and increased aridity in the tropical high agricultural potential regions, there will be increased incidences of farm pests and diseases, over cultivation, food insecurity and poverty especially in Tropical regions. Africa will face serious challenges in her endeavour to adapt to new mechanisms of food production for sustainable development.
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