Agricultural Adaptations to Climate Changes in West Africa

Monday, 15 December 2014
Kaiyu Guan, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, United States, Benjamin Sultan, IRD-LOCEAN, Paris Cedex 05, France, David B Lobell, Stanford University, Los Altos Hills, CA, United States, Michela Biasutti, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, NY, United States, Claudio Piani, American University inParis, Paris, France, Graeme L Hammer, the University of Queensland, Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation, Brisbane, Australia and Greg McLean, Agri-Science Queensland, Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation, Toowoomba, Australia
Agricultural production in West Africa is highly vulnerable to climate variability and change and a fast growing demand for food adds yet another challenge. Assessing possible adaptation strategies of crop production in West Africa under climate change is thus critical for ensuring regional food security and improving human welfare. Our previous efforts have identified as the main features of climate change in West Africa a robust increase in temperature and a complex shift in the rainfall pattern (i.e. seasonality delay and total amount change). Unaddressed, these robust climate changes would reduce regional crop production by up to 20%. In the current work, we use two well-validated crop models (APSIM and SARRA-H) to comprehensively assess different crop adaptation options under future climate scenarios. Particularly, we assess adaptations in both the choice of crop types and management strategies. The expected outcome of this study is to provide West Africa with region-specific adaptation recommendations that take into account both climate variability and climate change.