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Determinants of Farmers’ Climate Risk Perceptions in Agriculture—A Rural Ghana Perspective

Ndamani, Francis, Watanabe, Tsunemi
Water 2017 v.9 no.3
climate change, climatic factors, education, farmers' attitudes, focus groups, food security, human diseases, income, interviews, issues and policy, limited resource farmers, mortality, questionnaires, regression analysis, risk communication, risk perception, socioeconomics, Ghana
This study evaluates the socio-economic predictors of farmers’ perceptions about climate risk in agriculture. The levels of risk perception among different farmers’ wealth groups are also investigated. A total of 100 farmers in the Lawra district of Ghana are randomly selected and interviewed. Data is obtained through the use of semi-structured questionnaires and focus group discussions. A climate risk perception index (CRPI) is derived and applied to assess the degree of perceived risk among different wealth groups of farmers. The linear regression model is also used to analyze the data. The results showed that 93% of farmers have perceived climate risk while 7% are not sure if they have perceived it. Results of the CRPI showed that resource-poor farmers are concerned about climate risk on agricultural production, while resource-moderate and resource-rich farmers are concerned about risk impacts on climatic variables, and health and socio-economy, respectively. Results of the regression model showed that education, age, a perceived increase in human disease and mortality, and a decrease in food security and incomes are predictors of risk perception. The policy implication of this study is that predictors of farmers’ climate risk perception should be factored into climate change risk communication in order to boost awareness and adaptation to climate change.