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Sustainability 2015, 7(1), 384-397; doi:10.3390/su7010384

Maize Production Responsiveness to Land Use Change and Climate Trends in Cameroon

Département de Géographie, Université de Montréal, Pavillon 520, ch. de la Côte-Sainte-Catherine, Local 332-3, C.P. 6128, succursale Centre-ville, Montréal, Québec, QC H3C 3J7, Canada
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Marc A. Rosen
Received: 25 September 2014 / Accepted: 23 December 2014 / Published: 31 December 2014
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainable Agriculture, Food and Wildlife)
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Abstract

Most studies on the responsiveness of maize production to various variables have dwelled on the responsiveness of maize production to variations in precipitation or temperature. This study seeks to verify the response of maize production in Cameroon to both climate trends and land use change. Therefore, for the first time, our study presents findings on the relative influence of both climate and land use change on maize production in Cameroon. The data used in this analysis are essentially time series data spanning the period 1961–2006. The data on quantity of maize produced, area of maize harvested and number of maize seeds planted was taken from (http://faostat.fao.org). The mean maize growing season temperature and precipitation data were collected from the 0.5° × 0.5° gridded collaborative datasets of the UNEP and the School of Geography and Environment at Oxford University and from the global crop calendar dataset. The data were analyzed using the average rate of change, detrended simulations, the multiple linear regression technique, correlation coefficient and the coefficient of determination. The results show that maize production in Cameroon is more likely responsive to land use change (forest area change) than rainfall and temperature. However, for the climatic variables, maize production is more responsive to temperature variations than precipitation. In other words, the greater the land use change (forest area loss) the more likely the long run losses in the current maize production gains while rising temperatures were found to be more suitable for maize production. Even though the 1990s marked the period of recovering rainfall levels in most of the Sahel, large fluctuations were still recorded. View Full-Text
Keywords: maize production; responsiveness; rainfall; temperature; forest area; Cameroon maize production; responsiveness; rainfall; temperature; forest area; Cameroon
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Epule, T.E.; Bryant, C.R. Maize Production Responsiveness to Land Use Change and Climate Trends in Cameroon. Sustainability 2015, 7, 384-397.

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