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Climate change in Upper East Region of Ghana; challenges existing in farming practices and new mitigation policies

Fagariba, Clifford James, Song, Shaoxian, Baoro, Serge Kévin Gildas Soule
Open Agriculture 2018 v.3 no.1 pp. 524-536
case studies, climate change, crop rotation, drought, extension education, farmers, farming systems, focus groups, fossil fuels, fuel combustion, greenhouse gases, humans, international organizations, irrigation, land use change, livelihood, meteorological data, planting date, regression analysis, subsidies, surveys, temperature, transportation, Ghana
Countries and international organizations are making conscious effort to address climate change threat to humanity. Rising fossil fuel burning and land use changes to meet human demands continuously emit large quantities of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere thus causing climate change. The research used Talensi District as a case study to determine factors influencing farmers’ adaptation response and the actual practices used to avert climate change impact. A total of 225 small-scale farmers were sampled for survey and 100 key informants were used in focus group discussions. Utilizing the logistic regression model, the study indicated that education, transportation, inputs cost and extension services were the factors with high tendency of undermining farmers’ ability to adapt to climate change. In addition, Weighted Average Index used to measure weather extremes revealed that drought and temperature had the highest level of occurrence. Climate change adaptation practices assessed in the study showed that change in planting date, improved crops varieties and land rotation were the most preferred practices. The study concluded that farmers resilience could be enhanced if governments and concerned organizations intensify adaptation campaigns, increase access to weather information, and train farmers on adaptable practices including, timely planting and alternative sources of livelihood. In addition, intensifying government support for agriculture including input subsidies, and provision of irrigation facilities were also good interventions to improve climate change resilience.