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Climate Change and Agricultural Development In Africa: Solutions And Challenges To Persistent Famine

Keywords: Water conflicts , Conservational farming , Cattle rustling , fragile soils , poly cropping , greenhouse agriculture , staggered cropping , Indigenous Knowledge

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Global Warming is the biggest challenge facing humanity in the 21st century. While Scientists are busy modeling and predicting the pace and degree of future atmospheric interactions to warming, humanity has woken to the harsh reality that global warming today is caused by anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions which must be halted with diligence in order to save the Planet Earth and its inhabitants from extinction. Africa whose lifeline is rain fed agriculture is one of the most vulnerable Continents to the impacts of climate change caused by her vulnerabilities which include; varying landscapes and climates, fragile agro-ecological zones, low natural resource base and social and political upheavals, all of which make it difficult to find common solutions that address climate change impacts. To come up with agricultural development, solutions and challenges facing Africa in the changing climate scenario; (i) the researcher attended workshops on “agricultural water and climate change” conducted by the World Bank in Kenya, (ii) analyzed researches on agriculture in a changing world in Rwanda, agro-pastoralists in Ethiopia, in Kenya and Tanzania and Climate data from “Drought Monitoring Center Nairobi ” 1996-2008, (iii) analyzed researches on “agriculture at crossroads in sub-Saharan Africa” and working papers on “adaptation action after Copenhagen” (iv) the researcher evaluated climate change and food security reports from ICRISAT, and (v) conducted research on “ climate change and sustainable livelihoods in Eastern Africa”. It was established that Africa is warming up very fast as evidenced in droughts, floods, sea level rise and increased temperatures, erratic rainfall patterns, and threatened agricultural systems in Sub-Saharan Africa. However, both the Scientific and local Community based adaptation and mitigation solutions including; green energy options, soil moisture conservation, rainwater harvesting , irrigation, poly cropping, greenhouse farming and indigenous dry land crop farming are being employed to counter the adverse climate change impacts at both local and country levels, though with complex challenges.


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