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Atmosphere 2013, 4(4), 365-382; doi:10.3390/atmos4040365
Article

A Methodology to Infer Crop Yield Response to Climate Variability and Change Using Long-Term Observations

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Received: 31 August 2013; in revised form: 4 October 2013 / Accepted: 8 October 2013 / Published: 8 November 2013
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Abstract: A new methodology to extract crop yield response to climate variability and change from long-term crop yield observations is presented in this study. In contrast to the existing first-difference approach (FDA), the proposed methodology considers that the difference in value between crop yields of two consecutive years reflects necessarily the contributions of climate and management conditions, especially at large spatial scales where both conditions may vary significantly from one year to the next. Our approach was applied to remove the effect of non-climatic factors on crop yield and, hence, to isolate the effect of the observed climate change between 1961 and 2006 on three widely crops grown in three Mediterranean countries—namely wheat, corn and potato—using national-level crop yield observations’ time-series. Obtained results show that the proposed methodology provides us with a ground basis to improve substantially our understanding of crop yield response to climate change at a scale that is relevant to large-scale estimations of agricultural production and to food security analyses; and therefore to reduce uncertainties in estimations of potential climate change effects on agricultural production. Furthermore, a comparison of outputs of our methodology and FDA outputs yielded a difference in terms of maize production in Egypt, for example, that exceeds the production of some neighbouring countries.
Keywords: crop yield; climate change; new methodology; reducing uncertainties crop yield; climate change; new methodology; reducing uncertainties
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.

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MDPI and ACS Style

El-Maayar, M.; Lange, M.A. A Methodology to Infer Crop Yield Response to Climate Variability and Change Using Long-Term Observations. Atmosphere 2013, 4, 365-382.

AMA Style

El-Maayar M, Lange MA. A Methodology to Infer Crop Yield Response to Climate Variability and Change Using Long-Term Observations. Atmosphere. 2013; 4(4):365-382.

Chicago/Turabian Style

El-Maayar, Mustapha; Lange, Manfred A. 2013. "A Methodology to Infer Crop Yield Response to Climate Variability and Change Using Long-Term Observations." Atmosphere 4, no. 4: 365-382.


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