By Philip Thornton
Since becoming available in June 2011, the on-line and stand-alone versions of the MarkSim GCM stochastic weather generator tool have been widely tested. A few problems were found, which have now been corrected. Both versions of the tool can be used to generate daily data that are characteristic of current conditions, based on the WorldClim dataset, an interpolated surface of weather station data from around the world mostly covering the years 1960-1990.
One version of the tool can be accessed here, in a Google Earth user interface. An alternative version of the tool, which can be run via user-written scripts or calling programmes can be accessed here, along with detailed documentation. Read more »
by Julian Ramirez-Villegas
I consider myself a young researcher, with plenty of years left in me to solve some of the problems society faces in terms of climate change. But it is a little disconcerting when I discover that I’ll be retired by the time global climate models are of sufficient quality to plug directly into agricultural models. At least that is the finding of a recent article I lead authored, "Implications of regional improvement in global climate models for agricultural impact research".
The study took the latest global climate projections from CMIP5, those which are the basis for the forthcoming 5th Assessment Report of the IPCC, and examined how they have improved since the last version (CMIP3) which went into the 4th Assessment report back in 2007. Read more »
by Catherine Mungai and Tabitha Muchaba
Livestock is the mainstay of livelihood for the Borana pastoralists in southern Ethiopia. Recurrent cycles of drought are a major factor influencing production systems and livelihoods. This coupled with livestock disease, lack of market and low economic development pose major threats to the Borana pastoralist's livelihoods, who make their living mainly from keeping cattle, shoats and camels.
To cope with climate variability, the Borana community of southern Ethiopia are undertaking improved range management practices such as establishment of fenced rangeland enclosures. Read more »
by Catherine Mungai and Vivian Atakos
CCAFS East Africa in partnership with the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) and the African Climate Policy Centre (ACPC) are leading initiatives aimed at including agriculture into climate change policy discussions at national, regional and international levels.
The initiatives include a series of consultative workshops bringing together climate change and agriculture experts, negotiators from government institutions, universities, research institutions, NGOs, civil society, farmer organizations and the private sector to develop a comprehensive strategy on including agriculture into climate change discussions and to articulate the African needs and aspirations on agriculture.
A workshop held from 13 to 15 February 2013, in Tanzania, brought together 19 delegates to review the outcome of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of the Parties (COP 18) held in December 2012 and to prepare for the Bonn climate talks planned for June this year. Read more »
By guest blogger S. Gopikrishna Warrier
What can be done today to protect South Asia’s agriculture from climate change impacts occurring in 2020?
To find crafty and viable solutions to this question, experts from Bangladesh, India, Nepal and Sri Lanka joined forces with the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) South Asia, in Dhaka, Bangladesh in late February of this year. Read more »
by Vanessa Meadu
In Vietnam, everywhere you look there is food. Before dawn, people haul away huge bags of produce, meat, fish and flowers to later sell on the city streets. On every sidewalk of every town, people are chopping, washing, cooking food. And from morning to night, folks are eating at makeshift pavement restaurants, or grabbing refreshment from a steaming or sizzling mobile stall, perched on the backs of their motorbikes.
This country takes food and agriculture very seriously, and has made incredible progress in the last few decades, going from importing most of its food to becoming a major food exporter, and a leading global rice producer and exporter. In recent years neglected crops like cassava have become major income generators in Vietnam, contributing to poverty alleviation.
Much of this growth is due to government and international investment in Vietnam's small-scale farmers. But climate change is a hazard to this progress. At worst, it threatens millions of people who depend on agriculture, from farmers in the Mekong Delta to consumers in the Philippines and beyond who depend on cheap rice for nutrition. Read more »
CCAFS Coordinating Unit - University of Copenhagen, Faculty of Science, Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, Rolighedsvej 21, DK-1958 Frederiksberg C, Denmark, phone +45 35331046; Email ccafs [at] cgiar [dot] org, EAN 5790000279012
Lead Center - International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT)