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Gaiser T.,University of Bonn | Judex M.,University of Bonn | Igue A.M.,Institute National des Recherches Agricoles du Benin | Paeth H.,University of Wurzburg | Hiepe C.,Food and Agriculture Organisation
Agricultural and Forest Meteorology | Year: 2011

In this century climate change is assumed to be the major driver for changes in agricultural systems and crop productivity at the global scale. However, due to spatial differences in cropping systems and in the magnitude of climatic change regional variations of climate change impact are expected. Furthermore, the recent climate projections are highly uncertain for large parts of West Africa. In particular with respect to annual precipitation and variability the projections vary between trends with decreasing precipitation and trends with slightly increasing precipitation within the next decades. On the other hand, the extensive fallow systems in this region suffer from increasing population pressure, which compromises soil fertility restoration. In the Republic of Benin, the demographic projections for the first half of this century indicate a continuous growth of the population with a narrow interval of confidence. Thus, in the absence of an adequate soil fertility management with judicious use of mineral fertilizers, the soil degradation process with decreasing crop yields is expected to continue. The objective of this paper was, therefore, to quantify the regional effect of future population growth on crop yields in West Africa and to compare it with the potential effects of climate change scenarios. Three land use scenarios (L1, L2 and L3) for the Upper Ouémé catchment where derived from different demographic projections combined with assumptions regarding future road networks and legal frameworks for forest protection using the CLUE-S modeling approach. The fallow-cropland ratio decreased in the three scenarios from 0.87 in the year 2000 to 0.66, 0.48 and 0.68 for L1, L2 and L3, respectively in 2050. Based on the projected ratio of fallow and cropland, trends of maize yield for the three land use scenarios were calculated using the EPIC (Environmental Policy Integrated Climate) model coupled with a spatial database. Maize yields followed the decreasing trend of the fallow-cropland ratio and estimated yield reductions amounted to up to 24% in the period 2021-2050. This trend was compared with the impact of the SRES climate scenarios A1B and B1 based on the output of the GCM ECHAM5 downscaled with the REMO model and the A1B scenario output of the GCM HADC3Q0 downscaled with the RCMs SMHIRCA and HADRM3P. The yield reductions due to the projected climate change in the three models accounted for a yield decrease of up to 18% (REMO A1B scenario) in the same period. Taking into account the smaller uncertainties in the scenario assumptions and in the model output of the land use scenarios, it is concluded that, in low input fallow systems in West Africa, land use effects will be at least as important as climate effects within the next decades. © 2011 Elsevier B.V. Source

Muteia H.,Food and Agriculture Organisation | Oparinde A.,University of Cambridge | Maina G.,Stamping Out Avian and Pandemic Influenza STOPAI
African Journal of Agricultural Research | Year: 2011

Few studies have investigated the livelihood impacts of avian influenza in Nigeria at a farm level. Most of these have emphasised on the estimation of direct cost of production losses with less attention on the indirect effects relating to farm coping strategies. Using a descriptive analysis, we improved on these studies with an attempt to understand the livelihood impacts of avian influenza through a sustainable livelihood framework and farmers' coping behaviours. The livelihood impact of avian influenza varies across regions and poultry production sectors. Results of the farm survey suggest that the severity of impact on farm income is higher among the smallholders especially in the north-east geopolitical zone. The majority of the farms surveyed lost more than 50% of their monthly poultry income at the onset of the avian influenza crisis. Most severely affected group are the smallholders, particularly in sector 4 where about 21% lost between 80 to 100% of their annual poultry income. The disease outbreak also led to a significant reduction in poultry employment across the country but this is already picking up with a lower recovery rate being observed among the smallholders in sector 4 (56%) as compared to the commercial sector 2 (103%). We found that at the onset of the crisis, poultry farmers adopted a mix of responses involving asset divestment and even temporary closure but the proportion of farmers needing to adopt each coping strategy decreased with time. The findings obtained in this study are expected to inform the design and implementation of targeted avian influenza impact reduction policies in Nigeria. © 2011 Academic Journals. Source

Yajnik C.S.,Diabetes Unit | Joglekar C.V.,Diabetes Unit | Chinchwadkar M.C.,Diabetes Unit | Sayyad M.G.,Diabetes Unit | And 6 more authors.
International Journal of Cardiology | Year: 2013

Background: India is undergoing rapid epidemiological and nutritional transition largely as a consequence of rapid urbanisation. We investigated conventional and novel cardiovascular risk factors in rural and urban Indian men and studied their association with markers of vascular damage. Methods: We randomly selected and studied 149 rural, 142 urban slum residents and 150 urban middle class middle aged Indian men. We measured conventional (obesity, blood pressure, lipids, smoking habits) and novel (proinflammatory and prothrombotic factors) cardiovascular risk factors and markers of vascular damage (carotid intima media thickness (IMT), von Willebrand Factor (vWF), e-selectin). Results: There was a progressive increase in most of the conventional cardiovascular (CV) risk factors from rural to slum to urban middle class men. Plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1), platelet count, total homocysteine and C-reactive protein showed similar patterns. Carotid IMT was similar in the three groups; vWF was highest in rural and e-selectin in slum men. Adjusting for location, age explained 17%, obesity 3% and conventional risk factors 1% of the variance in carotid IMT, whilst novel cardiovascular risk factors were without any significant impact. Conclusions: Urbanisation increases obesity related as well as prothrombotic and proinflammatory CV risk factors in Indian men, but appears not to impact on IMT. © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. Source

Breeman G.,Leiden University | Dijkman J.,Food and Agriculture Organisation | Termeer C.,Wageningen University
Food Security | Year: 2015

Feeding the world is not only a complex technical matter, but also a demanding governance issue. As food security has all the characteristics of a wicked problem (variety of problem definitions, conflicting interests, interconnectedness across scales, inherent uncertainties), conventional governance arrangements do not seem to work. New ways of concerted actions are introduced to better link global challenges with local practices. One example of this is the Global Agenda for Sustainable Livestock: a partnership of public, private, social, and civil society actors, committed to the sustainable development of the livestock sector. It aims to enhance shared understanding of sustainability and its underlying development issues and to build consensus on the path towards sustainable food security through dialogue, consultation, and joint analyses. This article analyses the Agenda as a new type of governance arrangement to enhance food security. It relies on a theoretical framework that consists of five governance capabilities, which are considered crucial for coping with wicked problems: reflexivity, resilience, responsiveness, revitalisation, and rescaling. The aim of this paper is threefold: 1) to assess the Agenda and learn from that; 2) to evaluate the capabilities framework as a tool to assess governance arrangements; and 3) to reflect on the potentials of new governance arrangements to deal with food security. The article illustrates how the governance capabilities framework can be used as a tool to analyse the multi-stakeholder platform for enhancing food security. It concludes that the Agenda successfully encompasses many elements of these capabilities although improvements are possible. © 2015, The Author(s). Source

Crop production has fallen up to 90 percent in some regions and failed completely in the country's east, a consequence of an El Nino weather pattern that has caused significant declines in rain in some parts of the world and floods in others. The Rome-based UN Food and Agriculture Organisation said the drought had decimated Ethiopian livestock and threatened food supplies for 10.2 million people. Access to pasture and water will worsen until the rainy season begins in March, FAO said. "The outlook for 2016 is very grim," said FAO representative for Ethiopia Amadou Allahoury. "Food overall will become harder to access if we continue to see prices rise, food stocks deplete and livestock become weaker, less productive, and perish." Brought to its knees by famine in 1984, Ethiopia's economy is now one of the fastest-growing in the world, leaving it better able to deal with such crises. Agriculture also plays a smaller role in the economy, but the FAO says it still provides half of gross domestic product and 80 percent of employment. The agency's plan includes distributing seeds and animal feed, vaccinating animals, delivering 100,000 sheep and goats to vulnerable households and giving farmers cash for bringing weakened and unproductive livestock to slaughter. Communities will be offered support with savings-and-loans schemes, irrigation projects, and education. El Nino, marked by warming sea-surface temperatures in the Pacific Ocean, causes both drought and flooding in Ethiopia. FAO said the latter was expected to be as destructive to agriculture as the lack of rain.

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