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Climate Change and Indian Agriculture: Current Focus and Future Priorities P.K. Aggarwal Indian Agricultural Research Institute New Delhi, India Climate and Indian Agriculture Indian agriculture is considerably dependant on changes in weather

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climate change and indian agriculture current focus and future priorities
Climate Change and Indian Agriculture: Current Focus and Future Priorities

P.K. Aggarwal

Indian Agricultural Research Institute

New Delhi, India

climate and indian agriculture
Climate and Indian Agriculture
  • Indian agriculture is considerably dependant on changes in weather
  • Contribution of agriculture to GDP is decreasing, yet large population dependent on this for livelihoods
  • Need to understand the impacts of increasing climatic risks and possible adaptations
approach experiments modelling
Approach: Experiments & modelling

Models of food production

infocrop a user friendly crop modelling system
InfoCrop: A User-friendly Crop Modelling System
  • Model responds to change in:
    • Environment: Radiation, temperature, CO2, rainfall, wind speed, vapor pressure, flooding, frost
    • Soil
    • Variety
    • Agronomic Management
    • Pests population
  • Has been validated for rice, wheat, maize, sorghum, cotton, potato, groundnut, soybean, mustard in different agro-climatic regions
validation of infocrop for wheat producing states
Validation of InfoCrop for wheat producing states

Another validation with the parent model-WTGROWS- using FACE experiment at USA- showed good agreement with field observations

regional climate change scenarios
Regional climate change scenarios
  • PRECIS: A2 scenario
  • Daily values for 2070-2099 period
slide16

% Change in yield

05-10

00-05

-05-00

-05-10

-10-20

-20-40

>-40

Impact of climate change on wheat yields in a pessimistic technology scenario HaDCM3-2020

slide17

2020

2050

% Change in yield

05-10

00-05

-05-00

-05-10

-10-20

-20-40

>-40

Impact of climate change on wheat yields in a pessimistic technology scenario

HaDCM3 scenarios

slide18

2020

2050

% Change in yield

05-10

00-05

-05-00

-05-10

-10-20

-20-40

>-40

Impact of climate change on wheat yields in a paradise technology scenario

HaDCM3 scenarios

slide20

Tmin, C

25

20

25

15

Yield (Mg ha-1)

Radiation (MJ m-2 d-1)

23

10

21

5

Min Temp. (°C)

19

0

1985

1990

1995

2000

17

Year

15

1985

1990

1995

2000

Year

Relation of Recent Weather Trends with Yields of Paddy and Wheat

Decline in yield is apparently also related to decrease in radiation and increase in minimum temperature

slide21

Evidences in Recent Past:

Estimated impact of heat wave in March 2004 on wheat production

  • Increased heat: + 5-8 oC in north and central India from 5th March to 28th March, 2004
  • Caused a loss of 4.5 million tons of wheat
adaptation in agriculture is a continuous process
Adaptation in agriculture is a continuous process
  • Agriculture diversity is a manifestation of climatic adaptation
  • Farmers/society have always adapted when allowed by technology availability, their socio-economic capacity, and economics.
  • Induced adaptation by innovation:
    • Green revolution of 1960s
    • Resource conservation technologies such as zero tillage
    • GMOs
slide24

Traditional adaptations/coping strategies to climatic stress practiced by farmers

  • Drought proofing by mixed cropping
  • Low yielding, tolerant crops
  • Resource conservation
  • Single cropping
  • Frost management by irrigation
  • Heat stress alleviation by frequent irrigation
  • Shelter belts
slide25

Adaptation options to climatic change: autonomous

  • Changing varieties/crops
  • altering fertiliser rates to maintain grain or fruit quality and be more suited to the prevailing climate,
  • altering amounts and timing of irrigation
  • ‘harvest’ water
  • conserve soil moisture (e.g. crop residue retention)
  • use water more effectively
  • altering the timing or location of cropping activities
  • diversifying income including livestock raising
constraints in autonomous adaptations
Constraints in autonomous adaptations
  • Availability at desired time
    • Fields for desired activity
    • Extension services for management of adapted variety, if different
    • Seeds of adapted varieties
    • Irrigation water, fertilizer and machinery
  • Costs of adaptation- unknown
slide28

Adaptation options to climatic change: Planned

  • Investments in adaptation research capacity
  • Improved communication of climate changes and options to adapt to them
  • Investments in infrastructure for water management and for product transportation and marketing
  • Changes in policies and institutions, e.g. incentives for resource conservation and use efficiency
  • Credit for transition to adaptation technologies
  • Relocation to more productive areas
  • Creating alternate livelihood options and reducing dependence on agriculture
  • Greater insurance coverage for the farm
future priorities complex future agriculture scenario
Increasing demands for food

Reducing/stagnating crop yields: fatigue of intensive agriculture and climate change

Reducing availability of natural resources for agriculture

Need for increased resources: land, water, fertilizers, capital

Need to preserve environment

Greater environmental impact of agriculture

Future priorities: Complex future agriculture scenario
slide31

Agriculture in an Uncertain Future:

Need for Integrated Action

  • Assess vulnerability of agriculture to global climate change in a changing global scenario (demands, markets, technologies, natural resources)
    • Develop research infrastructure for assessment of direct impacts- FACE, FATE
    • Develop models for integrated assessment
    • Need to link ‘sectoral’ research- scenarios of climate change- water resources – agriculture and other sectors- policy -feedbacks
    • Identify research/technology/policy options for short-term
    • Focus on ‘no-regrets’ options
slide35

Indian National Network Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability of Indian Agriculture to Climatic ChangeInvolves 16 research institutes, >60 scientists

specific information needs
Specific Information Needs
  • Impact on food (crops, milk, fish) demand and supply- spatial and temporal differences
  • Impact on nutrition – cereals, legumes, oil crops
  • Impact on commercial crops (quality and quantity)- spices, tea, coffee, medicinal plants
  • Impact on trade – internal and external
  • Impact on natural resources- soil, water and air
  • Impact on farmer’s livelihood
  • Options to enhance adaptive capacity - farmer level, regional differences, government level
  • Potential of agricultural land as carbon sink
  • Policy implications: link with current development plans
information needs on vulnerability of agricultural sector
Information Needs on Vulnerability of Agricultural Sector
  • Can we remain self-sufficient in food despite global climatic changes, urbanization and trade liberalization?
  • Which regions and the social groups are more vulnerable to climatic change?
  • How will enhanced climatic risks affect livelihoods of resource-poor farmers- hill, coastal, tribals?
  • How should different farmers adapt to cope with climate change ? (in the background of changing scenario of demand and markets)
mitigation of climatic change feedbacks on environment information needs
Mitigation of Climatic Change/ Feedbacks on Environment : Information Needs
  • Can alternate land use systems such as plantations and agroforestry increase carbon sequestration and yet meet food demand?
  • How much area can be taken out from agriculture for forestry; where and what policy measures would be needed?
  • How much carbon is conserved by limited tillage options? For how long ?
  • What is the potential of biofuels for carbon mitigation; what policies and technologies would ensure their adoption by farming community?