Climate Change Scenarios, Perceptions and Crop Production: A Case Study of Semi-Arid Masvingo Province in Zimbabwe
Received Date: Aug 29, 2012 / Accepted Date: Oct 30, 2012 / Published Date: Nov 02, 2012
The paper analyses the impacts of climate change and crop production in the communal farms of Masvingo Province in Zimbabwe. The paper shows current climate change scenarios for Masvingo, analyses the relationship between climate change scenarios crop production and then prescribe adaptive measures to climate change. Historical monthly climate data from Zimbabwe Meteorological Services Department and crop yield data from the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development were used. A questionnaire survey was also conducted to gather farmers perceptions on climate change in addition two focus group discussions were held with selected farmers in the province. The results showed evidence of climate change through analysis of climate data, crop yields and farmers perceptions. Evidence was manifested through the increasing frequency of droughts, dry spells and the shifts of the rainfall season. It was the concluded that climate change occurring in Masvingo has resulted in significant decline in crop production. The people’s perceptions shows that the crop growing seasons are becoming shorter, temperatures are rising, rainfall amounts are declining and mid season droughts are also occurring more frequently. The lessons learnt mean that people are aware of climate change and its impacts on crop production but lack the means to adapt to these changes.
Keywords: Climate change; Crop production; Drought; Dry spells; Perceptions; Adaptation; Masvingo province
Citation: Simba FM, Chikodzi D, Murwendo T (2012) Climate Change Scenarios, Perceptions and Crop Production: A Case Study of Semi-Arid Masvingo Province in Zimbabwe. J Earth Sci Climate Change 3: 124. Doi: 10.4172/2157-7617.1000124
Copyright: ©2012 Simba FM, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.