• Study on rice farmer’s perception and adaptation measures under climate change and vulnerability context in Bardiya District.

  •   | 
  • 29/02/2016

This BSc thesis study was conducted by Hridesh Sharma, student at the Tribhuwan University, as part of the SAF-BIN project in Nepal in 2014.

Rain-fed agriculture, covering the majority of crop production in Nepal, is highly vulnerable to climate change. Adaption practices offer sustainable solutions to mitigate climate change effects. The strategies, however, have to be developed based on the local circumstances.The objectives of this study were to assess the climate change related perceptions of rice farmers and to investigate the local, prevailing adaptation practices of rice production in Bardiya district of Nepal. The research was carried out in Kalika and Motipur VDC1 during June-September 2014. Primary data were collected through 80 household surveys (50% SAF-BIN farmers), five focus group discussions with 72 famers and five key informant interviews involving e.g. farmers and district officers. Secondary data were screened for information on precipitation and temperature trends and were collected from the Central Bureau of Statistics and the Department of Hydrology and Meteorology. SAF-BIN farmers had a better understanding of climate change compared to other farmers. The negative effects of climate change have been experienced by the majority of the people interviewed. Compared to ten years ago, farmers are facing rises in temperature, decreases in monsoon rainfall, extended drought lengths and severity. Drought, disease and pest insects, decline in soil fertility and restricted availability to quality seeds were mentioned as key causes for the reducing rice production. The farmers´ perceptions are in accordance with secondary data. A trend analysis of the past 30 years shows temperature increases for max (+0.0640C), min (+0.0140C) and average (+0.0390C) temperature, but decreases (-8.031 mm) and high fluctuations in the annual rainfall. SAF-BIN farmers adopted climate-smart strategies. 94% now use the introduced drought tolerant Sukha rice varieties and also non SAF-BIN farmers started to cultivate these varieties in small quantities, buying the seeds at shops. Other adoption practices include changing seed sowing dates, use of more farm yard manure and replacement of insecticides with integrated pest management practices.The study recommends to expand the approaches, e.g. to climate change-smart groundwater extraction technologies and to upscale the introduced climate smart practices to reach more farmers.

1Village development comittee