Special Issue "Climate Change in Agriculture: Impacts and Adaptations"

A special issue of Agronomy (ISSN 2073-4395).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 May 2018)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Dr. Davide Cammarano

The James Hutton Institute, Invergowrie, Dundee DD2 5DA, Scotland, UK
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +44-(0)344-928-5428
Interests: agronomy; crop simulation models; precision agriculture; climate change and climate forecast
Guest Editor
Dr. Roberto Ferrise

Department of Agri-food Production and Environmental Sciences, University of Florence, P. le delle Cascine 18, 50144, Firenze, Italy
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +39-055-275-5704
Interests: Climate change impacts, adaptations and mitigation; Crop modelling; Mediterranean crops and agricultural systems; Precision Agriculture

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Agriculture is handed a difficult challenge over the next 20 years. Due to the rapid increase in the world’s population, and the current trend suggests that there will be an increased global food demand. Therefore, there is a need to produce more food on the same, or less, cultivated areas. In addition, crop production needs to be achieved in a sustainable way, without polluting the environment, and without reducing farmer incomes.  However, projected climate change will increase the vulnerability of agricultural production, with projected impacts being positive or negative depending on the geographical location. The impacts and adaptations have been studied using several methodologies, such as process-based models, agro-ecosystem models, and statistical models based on historical data. This Special Issue welcomes articles, from any agricultural area of the world, and for any cropping system, dealing with impacts and adaptations of climate change. We welcome novel approaches involving different methodologies and assessments.

Dr. Davide Cammarano
Dr. Roberto Ferrise
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Agronomy is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • agricultural crops
  • impacts
  • adaptations
  • climate change

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle The Role of Transdisciplinary Research for Agricultural Climate Change Adaptation Strategies
Agronomy 2018, 8(11), 237; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy8110237
Received: 14 October 2018 / Accepted: 19 October 2018 / Published: 24 October 2018
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Abstract
While science widely acknowledges the necessity of climate change adaptation (CCA), concrete strategies for CCA by major land-use actor groups at a local level are largely missing. Immediate economic challenges often prevent the establishment of long-term collective strategies. However, collective decisions on a
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While science widely acknowledges the necessity of climate change adaptation (CCA), concrete strategies for CCA by major land-use actor groups at a local level are largely missing. Immediate economic challenges often prevent the establishment of long-term collective strategies. However, collective decisions on a communal level regarding land use are crucial for CCA strategies, given the interdependencies of farming with forestry, tourism, and other economic sectors, especially in mountain areas. This paper presents inter- and trans-disciplinary learning processes, which have evolved into a project modelling the hydrological effects of combined future climate and land-use changes based on the combined scenarios of climate and socio-economic change in an Alpine valley (Brixental in Tyrol/Austria). Locally adapted scenarios illustrate future land-use changes as a result of both climate change and different socio-economic developments. The hydrological results show how an increase in the forested area reduces streamflow (as a measure of water availability) in the long term. For local stakeholders, the process demonstrated clearly the interdependence of different economic sectors and the necessity for collective action at a regional level to influence socio-economic development. Moreover, it made them aware that local decisions on future land use may influence the effects of climate change. Consistent storylines helped stakeholders to visualize a desired future and to see their scope of influence. The transdisciplinary research process allowed local stakeholders to translate the hydrological modelling results into a concrete local CCA strategy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change in Agriculture: Impacts and Adaptations)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Challenges and Responses to Ongoing and Projected Climate Change for Dryland Cereal Production Systems throughout the World
Received: 28 February 2018 / Revised: 13 March 2018 / Accepted: 16 March 2018 / Published: 23 March 2018
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Abstract
Since the introduction of mechanized production in both developed and developing countries, crops and their management have undergone significant adaptation resulting in increased productivity. Historical yield increases in wheat have occurred across most regions of the world (20–88 kg ha−1 year−1
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Since the introduction of mechanized production in both developed and developing countries, crops and their management have undergone significant adaptation resulting in increased productivity. Historical yield increases in wheat have occurred across most regions of the world (20–88 kg ha−1 year−1), but climate trends threaten to dampen or reverse these gains such that yields are expected to decrease by 5–6% despite rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations. Current and projected climatic factors are temporally and spatially variable in dryland cereal production systems throughout the world. Productivity gains in wheat in some locations have been achieved from traditional agronomic practices and breeding. Continued improvement in all cereal production regions and locations of the world requires technical advances, including closer monitoring of soils, water conservation strategies, and multiple sowing times using different crops to reduce risks. The management of disease, pests, and weeds will be an added challenge, especially in areas of higher precipitation. Excellent progress has been achieved in Asia and there is much potential in Sub-Saharan Africa. Technical solutions seem within our grasp but must be implemented in the context of variable social, economic, regulatory, and administrative constraints, providing opportunities for cross fertilization and global collaboration to meet them. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change in Agriculture: Impacts and Adaptations)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Utilizing Process-Based Modeling to Assess the Impact of Climate Change on Crop Yields and Adaptation Options in the Niger River Basin, West Africa
Received: 21 December 2017 / Revised: 19 January 2018 / Accepted: 23 January 2018 / Published: 27 January 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (7521 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Climate change is estimated to substantially reduce crop yields in Sub-Saharan West Africa by 2050. Yet, a limited number of studies also suggest that several adaptation measures may mitigate the effects of climate change induced yield loss. In this paper, we used AquaCrop,
[...] Read more.
Climate change is estimated to substantially reduce crop yields in Sub-Saharan West Africa by 2050. Yet, a limited number of studies also suggest that several adaptation measures may mitigate the effects of climate change induced yield loss. In this paper, we used AquaCrop, a process-based model developed by the FAO (The Food and Agriculture Organization, Rome, Italy), to quantify the risk of climate change on several key cereal crops in the Niger Basin. The crops analyzed include maize, millet, and sorghum under rain fed cultivation systems in various agro-ecological zones within the Niger Basin. We also investigated several adaptation strategies, including changes in the sowing dates, soil nutrient status, and cultivar. Future climate change is estimated using nine ensemble bias-corrected climate model projection results under RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 (RCP—Representative Concentration Pathway) emissions scenario at mid future time period, 2021/25–2050. The results show that on average, temperature had a larger effect on crop yields so that the increase in precipitation could still be a net loss of crop yield. Our simulated results showed that climate change effects on maize and sorghum yield would be mostly positive (2% to 6% increase) in the Southern Guinea savanna zone while at the Northern Guinea savanna zone it is mostly negative (2% to 20% decrease). The results show that at the Sahelian zone the projected changes in temperature and precipitation have little to no impact on millet yield for the future time period, 2021/25–2050. In all agro-ecological zones, increasing soil fertility from poor fertility to moderate, near optimal and optimal level significantly reversed the negative yield change respectively by over 20%, 70% and 180% for moderate fertility, near optimal fertility, and optimal fertility. Thus, management or adaptation factors, such as soil fertility, had a much larger effect on crop yield than the climatic change factors. These results provide actionable guidance on effective climate change adaptation strategies for rain fed agriculture in the region. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change in Agriculture: Impacts and Adaptations)
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Open AccessArticle Climate Change and Pest Management: Unanticipated Consequences of Trophic Dislocation
Received: 20 October 2017 / Revised: 14 December 2017 / Accepted: 10 January 2018 / Published: 17 January 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (4903 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The growth of plants and insects occurs only above a minimum temperature threshold. In insects, the growth rate depends on the temperature above the threshold up to a maximum. In plants the growth rate above the threshold generally depends on the availability of
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The growth of plants and insects occurs only above a minimum temperature threshold. In insects, the growth rate depends on the temperature above the threshold up to a maximum. In plants the growth rate above the threshold generally depends on the availability of sunlight. Thus, the relative growth rates of crops and insect phytophages are expected to differ between temperature regimes. We should therefore expect insect pest pressure at a location to change with climate warming. In this study, we used actual and simulated climate data developed for the IPCC 4th Assessment Report to drive linked plant and insect growth models to examine likely changes in insect-crop interaction. Projections of insect-crop dynamics through the 21st century suggest increases in pest pressure over much of the American Midwest, which could result in substantial increases in pesticide use to maintain productivity. Thus, climate warming could cause an increase in agriculture’s carbon footprint. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change in Agriculture: Impacts and Adaptations)
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Review

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Open AccessReview Climate Change Trends and Impacts on California Agriculture: A Detailed Review
Received: 9 November 2017 / Revised: 13 February 2018 / Accepted: 21 February 2018 / Published: 26 February 2018
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (8525 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
California is a global leader in the agricultural sector and produces more than 400 types of commodities. The state produces over a third of the country’s vegetables and two-thirds of its fruits and nuts. Despite being highly productive, current and future climate change
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California is a global leader in the agricultural sector and produces more than 400 types of commodities. The state produces over a third of the country’s vegetables and two-thirds of its fruits and nuts. Despite being highly productive, current and future climate change poses many challenges to the agricultural sector. This paper provides a summary of the current state of knowledge on historical and future trends in climate and their impacts on California agriculture. We present a synthesis of climate change impacts on California agriculture in the context of: (1) historic trends and projected changes in temperature, precipitation, snowpack, heat waves, drought, and flood events; and (2) consequent impacts on crop yields, chill hours, pests and diseases, and agricultural vulnerability to climate risks. Finally, we highlight important findings and directions for future research and implementation. The detailed review presented in this paper provides sufficient evidence that the climate in California has changed significantly and is expected to continue changing in the future, and justifies the urgency and importance of enhancing the adaptive capacity of agriculture and reducing vulnerability to climate change. Since agriculture in California is very diverse and each crop responds to climate differently, climate adaptation research should be locally focused along with effective stakeholder engagement and systematic outreach efforts for effective adoption and implementation. The expected readership of this paper includes local stakeholders, researchers, state and national agencies, and international communities interested in learning about climate change and California’s agriculture. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change in Agriculture: Impacts and Adaptations)
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Open AccessReview Effects of Climate Change on Grassland Biodiversity and Productivity: The Need for a Diversity of Models
Received: 14 December 2017 / Revised: 29 January 2018 / Accepted: 31 January 2018 / Published: 2 February 2018
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (262 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
There is increasing evidence that the impact of climate change on the productivity of grasslands will at least partly depend on their biodiversity. A high level of biodiversity may confer stability to grassland ecosystems against environmental change, but there are also direct effects
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There is increasing evidence that the impact of climate change on the productivity of grasslands will at least partly depend on their biodiversity. A high level of biodiversity may confer stability to grassland ecosystems against environmental change, but there are also direct effects of biodiversity on the quantity and quality of grassland productivity. To explain the manifold interactions, and to predict future climatic responses, models may be used. However, models designed for studying the interaction between biodiversity and productivity tend to be structurally different from models for studying the effects of climatic impacts. Here we review the literature on the impacts of climate change on biodiversity and productivity of grasslands. We first discuss the availability of data for model development. Then we analyse strengths and weaknesses of three types of model: ecological, process-based and integrated. We discuss the merits of this model diversity and the scope for merging different model types. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change in Agriculture: Impacts and Adaptations)
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