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Climate 2014, 2(4), 223-241; doi:10.3390/cli2040223

Factors Affecting Farmers’ Adaptation Strategies to Environmental Degradation and Climate Change Effects: A Farm Level Study in Bangladesh

1
Department of Agricultural Extension Education, Bangladesh Agricultural University, Mymensingh 2202, Bangladesh
2
Division of Economic of Horticultural Production, Faculty of Agriculture and Horticulture, Humboldt University of Berlin (HUB), Unter den Linden 6, 10099 Berlin, Germany
3
Agricultural Business Management, Institute of Applied Agriculture, University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 19 May 2014 / Revised: 22 August 2014 / Accepted: 26 August 2014 / Published: 26 September 2014
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Abstract

Offering a case study of coastal Bangladesh, this study examines the adaptation of agriculturalists to degrading environmental conditions likely to be caused or exacerbated under global climate change. It examines four central components: (1) the rate of self-reported adoption of adaptive mechanisms (coping strategies) as a result of changes in climate; (2) ranking the potential coping strategies based on their perceived importance to agricultural enterprises; (3) identification the socio-economic factors associated with adoption of coping strategies, and (4) ranking potential constraints to adoption of coping strategies based on farmers’ reporting on the degree to which they face these constraints. As a preliminary matter, this paper also reports on the perceptions of farmers in the study about their experiences with climatic change. The research area is comprised of three villages in the coastal region (Sathkhira district), a geographic region which climate change literature has highlighted as prone to accelerated degradation. One-hundred (100) farmers participated in the project’s survey, from which the data was used to calculate weighted indexes for rankings and to perform logistic regression. The rankings, model results, and descriptive statistics, are reported here. Results showed that a majority of the farmers self-identified as having engaged in adaptive behavior. Out of 14 adaptation strategies, irrigation ranked first among farm adaptive measures, while crop insurance has ranked as least utilized. The logit model explained that out of eight factors surveyed, age, education, family size, farm size, family income, and involvement in cooperatives were significantly related to self-reported adaptation. Despite different support and technological interventions being available, lack of available water, shortage of cultivable land, and unpredictable weather ranked highest as the respondent group’s constraints to coping with environmental degradation and change effects. These results provide policy makers and development service providers with important insight, which can be used to better target interventions which build promote or facilitate the adoption of coping mechanisms with potential to build resiliency to changing climate and resulting environmental impacts. View Full-Text
Keywords: farmers’ adaptation; climate change; Bangladesh farmers’ adaptation; climate change; Bangladesh
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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MDPI and ACS Style

Uddin, M.N.; Bokelmann, W.; Entsminger, J.S. Factors Affecting Farmers’ Adaptation Strategies to Environmental Degradation and Climate Change Effects: A Farm Level Study in Bangladesh. Climate 2014, 2, 223-241.

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