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Adaptation to Climate Change by Smallholder Farmers in Tanzania

Author

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  • Coretha Komba
  • Edwin Muchapondwa

Abstract

In Sub-Saharan Africa, climate change is set to hit the agricultural sector the most and cause untold suffering particularly for smallholder farmers. To cushion themselves against the potential welfare losses, smallholder farmers need to recognize the changes already taking place in their climate and undertake appropriate investments towards adaptation. This study investigates whether smallholder farmers in Tanzania recognize climate change and consequently adapt to it in their agricultural activities. The study also investigates the factors influencing their choice of adaptation methods to climate change To do this, the study collected and analyzed data from 556 randomly selected households in a sample of districts representing the six agro-ecological regions of the country. The data shows that Tanzanian smallholder farmers have observed changes in mean and variance precipitation and temperature and responded to it The farmers have generally used shortseason crops, drought-resistant crops, irrigation, planting dates and tree planting to adapt to the potential negative impacts of climate change on their agricultural yields. A binary logit model is used to investigate the factors influencing a famer's decision to undertake any adaptation at all to climate change while a multinomial logit model is used to investigate the factors influencing farmers' choice of specific adaptation methods. The Tanzanian government needs to help smallholder farmers overcome constraints they face in taking up adaptation to climate change. Furthermore, the government can play a significant role by promoting adaptation methods appropriate for particular circumstances e.g. particular crops or agro-ecological zones.

Suggested Citation

  • Coretha Komba & Edwin Muchapondwa, 2012. "Adaptation to Climate Change by Smallholder Farmers in Tanzania," Working Papers 299, Economic Research Southern Africa.
  • Handle: RePEc:rza:wpaper:299
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    File URL: http://www.econrsa.org/node/322
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Molua, Ernest L. & Lambi, Cornelius M., 2007. "The economic impact of climate change on agriculture in Cameroon," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4364, The World Bank.
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    Cited by:

    1. Marmai, Nadine, 2016. "Farmers’ investments in innovative technologies in times of precipitation extremes: A statistical analysis for rural Tanzania," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis. Working Papers 201617, University of Turin.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Adaptation methods; smallholder farmers; agro-ecological zones; climate change; Tanzania.;

    JEL classification:

    • Q10 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - General
    • Q12 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Micro Analysis of Farm Firms, Farm Households, and Farm Input Markets
    • Q51 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Valuation of Environmental Effects
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming
    • Q57 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Ecological Economics

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