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Sri Lanka Alternative crops and production practices
 

Sri Lanka Alternative crops and production practices

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    Sri Lanka Alternative crops and production practices Sri Lanka Alternative crops and production practices Presentation Transcript

    • Alternative crops and production practices Climate Change and Dealing with Extremes Presented by: Ajith Tennakoon, Sewalanka Foundation, Sri Lanka
    • Global Climate Change
      • Globally climate
      • Change is
      • accelerating and all
      • countries whether
      • developed or under
      • developed are being
      • urged to start
      • adapting now.
    • How we at Sewalanka react
      • Disaster Management
      • While Sewalanka is primarily a development organization, our mandate is to work with disadvantaged or vulnerable communities. This means that we often work in areas that have been directly affected by disasters or are susceptible to future disasters. We have responded to both the man-made disaster of armed conflict and natural disasters like floods, landslides, droughts, climate change and the 2004 tsunami.
    • How we at Sewalanka reacts
      • Our disaster management program
      • incorporates three phases:
      • Emergency response,
      • Rehabilitation and recovery, and
      • Risk reduction through awareness, planning and mitigation
      • Studies stories from
      • local farmers in
      • Southern Sri Lankan dry
      • zone reveals that
      • agriculture is highly at
      • risk from changes to the climate.
      • Dry zone is where most of the extensive
      • farming and agriculture is done in Sri Lanka
      Climate Change: How it affects us ?
      • Sri Lankan agricultural sector is already characterized by high exposure to risk due to the change of rainfall, drought, and rising heat.
      • Risks in agriculture are grouped into two main groups: Price risks (trade issue) and production risks (climatic conditions, pests and diseases) and also other risks (eg. Changes in the markets, opportunities for organic produce, major switches in consumer demand like the margarine versus butter issue, etc).
      Climate Change: How it affects us ?
      • Farming: How it relates to CC ?
      • The rapid change of weather and rainfall pattern has become a major cause of uncertainty in agriculture, manifesting itself in crop yields, pests, or crop failures, and influences the type of crop or livestock that can be grown in the dry zones of the country.
      • Farmers try and minimize this risk through measures like insurance, or try to minimize their losses trying many different alternatives. eg. planting a number of different crops, not planting.
      Climate Change: How it affects us ?
    • Impacts of climate change and best practices of adaptation
    • Best practices from the field
      • Farmers in Kadiragoda, Hambantota used to grow paddy since generations.
      • Paddy farming is done in both “Yala” and “Maha” seasons of the year.
      • Maha and Yala which are synonymous with two monsoons. Maha Season falls during “North-east monsoon” from September to March in the following year. Yala season is effective during the period from May to end of August. When the crop is sown and harvested during above periods, the particular season is defined.
      • However since a decade, the whole area devoted for paddy is not being cultivated due to number of reasons such as shortage of water during the seasons, prevailing unsettle conditions on the ground, etc. 
      • Rainfall patterns are becoming more variable, more difficult to model and predict.
    • Best practices from the field
      • There are fears that many of the existing crops (Wheat, other vegetables) will not be able to grow if the region warms and gets drier. Farmers in these dry zones are already looking for other crops to plant other than wheat, and paddy.
      • Farmers of Kadiragoda, Hambantota are already looking for new opportunities, but these are tending to be the well-resourced farmers who are able to respond, put in new planting stock, investigate markets etc.
      • These farmers have switched to grow drought resistant varieties of vegetables that needs minimum amount of water and can be grown in harsh climate conditions using organic fertilizer.
      Best practices from the field
      • Drought tolerant varieties of vegetables like Thibbatu, Batu and Brinjals and maze has enabled to make up for lost productivity due to changing climate.  
      • In areas experiencing the most intense changes in climate, farmers have substitute other staple crops for those that they habitually plant.
      Best practices from the field
      • These new drought resistant vegetables thrive better under changing conditions.  Additionally, areas experiencing intense temperature change have switch to a more livestock intensive practice, where that livestock can feed on the more hardy grasses that would grow under the changed conditions.
      • These new varieties have become more economically profitable for the villagers in Kadiragoda, Hambantota than depending on traditional paddy cultivation which needs more attention and care.
      • Sewalanka Foundation helps the group of farmers share this message and new trend of farming with their neighbor villages.
      Best practices from the field