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Information about agriculture

Published on December 31, 2007

Author: Cuthbert


Climate change and agriculture: Will extreme weather leave us hungry?:  Climate change and agriculture: Will extreme weather leave us hungry? Brian Thomas Warwick HRI University of Warwick: Warwick HRI a Department of Plant and Microbial Sciences:  University of Warwick: Warwick HRI a Department of Plant and Microbial Sciences Crop science applied to sustainable production, particularly of horticultural crops Crop genetics, breeding, crop production, crop protection Strong Defra and industry linkages Outline:  Outline Climate change policy and Agriculture Climate change research in Warwick HRI Predicting extreme weather and crop responses Examples and case studies The spector of bioenergy Conclusions and discussion Policy:  Policy UK target to reduce carbon dioxide emissions through domestic and international action by 26-32% by 2020 and 60% by 2050 (1990 baseline) Based on 550 ppm CO2 or plus 2oC “In the UK, other critical sectors of the economy where we need to do more to tackle greenhouse gas emissions include agriculture and waste management.” Agriculture and Climate Change Research :  Agriculture and Climate Change Research Emissions from agriculture to air (7% UK greenhouse gases). Mitigating nitrogen and carbon emissions to air. Energy in agriculture and food. Bioenergy. Renewable materials. Climate change impacts and adaptations. Energy and water use:  Energy and water use Where does it go? Options for improving efficiency Energy Steve Adams WHRI & Farm Energy Centre Water Andrew Thompson WHRI & ADAS Energy in agriculture:  Overall: Petroleum products = 52%, electricity (primary) = 36%, gas = 12%, coal = 0.4%, renewables (2005) = <0.1% Energy in agriculture Water use in Environment Agency regions:  Water use in Environment Agency regions Irrigation of field crops is the largest sector for abstraction in regions where water courses are under threat Livestock farming tends to occur where water is plentiful Impacts on the delivery of biodiversity through Agri-Environment Schemes: Bill Finch-Savage:  Countryside Stewardship at WHRI: Hedge rows Margins Pollen and nectar producers Arable reversion Impacts on the delivery of biodiversity through Agri-Environment Schemes: Bill Finch-Savage Coastal Sites: Some habitats are threatened directly, i.e coastal sites :  Coastal Sites: Some habitats are threatened directly, i.e coastal sites Peak District: Some species are vulnerable at the edge of their climate zones i.e. if they require low temperature and/or occupy high mountain habitats Case study Sites: Warwickshire: Other areas are less immediately threatened, but ES management may need to be altered to allow for climate change Predicted Consequences of Climate Change for the UK:  Predicted Consequences of Climate Change for the UK Temperatures rise by 2 - 3.5 oC Wetter winters, drier summers More heatwaves Flooding and landslides more frequent Sea level rises Extreme Weather:  Extreme Weather Extreme weather events: Exceeding the critical physiological and/or physical thresholds for specified crops, including heat waves, gales or frosts during sensitive stages of crop development that may cause crop failure or have a significant impact on quality. Extreme weather impacts: Weather conditions affecting crop growth or management and resulting in substantial reduction in yield or quality. This could be a consequence of a single event, e.g. late spring frost, or prolonged weather conditions, e.g. severe drought or continues soil wetness. Modelled temperature extremes:  Modelled temperature extremes Data from Hadley forecasts then RRes stochastic weather generator. HadCM3..HadRM3..LARS-WG.. Modelled daily preciptation:  Modelled daily preciptation Sensitivities to extreme weather:  Sensitivities to extreme weather Effects of high temperature:  Effects of high temperature Flowering time in wheat:  Flowering time in wheat Winter Cauliflower:  Winter Cauliflower Slide22:  Phases of development Slide24:  Weekly Cornish cauliflower production 1996/1997 Nov Jan Mar Diamond-back moth – Plutella xylostella:  Diamond-back moth – Plutella xylostella Migrant pest – cannot overwinter successfully in UK at present – but might if it gets warmer Development favoured by high temperatures - optimum 30°and still thriving at 40° Develops insecticide resistance very readily Diamond-back moth:  Diamond-back moth Migration depends on conditions at source (so south-west Europe). Recent larger migrations correlated with higher temperatures in SW Europe Wind direction and strength also a factor. Scenario – UK overwintering + increased migration, more insecticides, insecticide resistance. Slide29:  Immigration Slide30:  1 February 1 June Slide32:  26 July 2006 – very dry This was the week they stopped planting brassicas Slide33:  17 August 2006 – same plot Hot, dry summer of 2006:  Hot, dry summer of 2006 Reduced yields in onion, Brussels sprout, carrot, beans, cauliflower, peas Some peas for freezing left in field Fuel costs for pumping irrigation Running out of stored water Strawberry planting and harvest affected Potatoes - association between dry soils at desiccation and bruising Salads – scheduling affected Large migration of diamond-back moth European Heat Wave 2003:  European Heat Wave 2003 Warm, wet autumn:  Warm, wet autumn Delay in potato harvest Delay in autumn field work Increased disease in autumn cereals Clubroot in oil seed rape Warm winter - stored crops:  Warm winter - stored crops Potatoes Increased risk of wet rots, early sprouting, secondary growth in stores. Secondary growth also associated with lack of irrigation. Cabbage Thrips trapped inside are continuing to reproduce Warm winter – effects on insects and plants:  Warm winter – effects on insects and plants Survival of Nasonovia ribisnigri adults and nymphs through January Very early captures of Myzus persicae by suction traps Lack of fruit formation in blackcurrant Wet winter:  Wet winter Land too wet too work – spring sowing and planting delayed. Pressures on food supplies:  Pressures on food supplies World population increased from 1.6 to 6 billion last century It is projected to rise to 9 billion by 2042 Consumption per head will also increase (change from grain/ vegetables to meat) Most good quality land is already in use US Census bureau Defra strategy:  Defra strategy Low-Carbon Transport: there is strong potential to transform our cars, lorries and buses away from relying on fossil fuels. This can happen through a range of technologies: today biofuels can be made from sugar beet , corn and other produce; but a new generation of biofuels is under development which can use a much wider range of materials including wood and waste, with even better greenhouse gas savings. Biofuels:  Biofuels The Renewable transport fuel obligation (RTFO) was announced in November 2005. It encourages fuel companies to incorporate biofuel into road traffic fuel sold through the forecourt at a rate of 5% by 2010/11 (2.5% in 2008/9 and 3.75% in 2009/10). Without imports the UK will have to use a substantial proportion of its 'arable' land (estimated at between 20 and 33%)to meet the RTFO target from home grown biofuels. All that would be needed to provide for 3.5% of our national road fuel requirement. Biofuels:  Biofuels The US, Brazil, and the EU alone, will shortly between them, be using more grain for biofuels than the entire global trade for grain. It takes about 330kg of grain to make enough biofuel to fill a 23 gallon fuel tank, more than the average grain consumption per capita over an entire year! ... global [grain] production has only met consumption once over the last seven years. In 2006/7, the world will have produced over 70 million tonnes less than it consumed, drawing down stocks accordingly. Even without the forecast growth in the biofuel industry, the globe as its agriculture stands at present, cannot meet demand. Either performance per hectare (yield) or total cropped area have to increase on a major scale... Andersons Management Consultants Conclusions:  Conclusions Climate change will lead to more periods of high temperature and periods of heavy rain. Unseasonal or extreme weather will have an increasing impact on crop production There are already examples of what to expect Modelling can help predict consequences and guide adaptation. Extreme weather in the UK may not in itself make us go hungry but its impact will exacerbate other pressures on food supply Acknowledgements:  Acknowledgements Mikhail Semenov Aiming Qi Keith Jaggard Rothamsted Research Steve Adams Rosemary Collier Jane Fellows Carol Jenner Andrew Thompson Bill Finch-Savage Warwick HRI

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