Knowledge Sharing for Climate Change Adaption

MR. LAWRENCE AKPALU

Associated Organization: FORESTRY COMMISSION ,GHANA

Climate change has affected most of Ghana agriculture crops especially COCOA (THEOBROMA CACAO) . In view of the above I  used spatial analysis  approach to determine this  geographical changes and how these changes affect Cocoa production in Ghana.

 

Themes: Agriculture, fisheries and food security, Climate Science, Forestry

Regions: West Africa

Countries: Ghana

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Overview:

 

Introduction

Agriculture production in Ghana is largely rainfed and thus sensitive to changes in precipitation pattern.

Despite the fact of the oil find, Agriculture is still forms a bed rock to Ghana’s economy. About 67% of the farmers use maize as cash crop in addition to feeding their households. The country also has some large farms and plantation, particularly for cocoa (1,200,000 ha), oil palm (285,000 ha), Seed cotton (62,000 ha), Tobacco (1,600 ha) and coconut, banana and kola (1,502,500 ha). Ghana also is sufficient in production of maize, cocoyam, plantain and cassava[i] .However, most of the crops we produced here are based on rain fed agriculture.

 

Recent observations indicate that climate change could produce disruption of agricultural systems and food security[i].The weather pattern continue to change and these changes could decrease agricultural productivity and it is anticipated that this trend might become more pronounced overtime[ii].

 

From literature, every plant has a minimum water requirement to survive. For instance Maize needs about 400mm of rainfall  to reach maturity, also, Cocoa survive under 720mm of rain and must at least have well spread distribution of 90mm of rain every month[iii].

 

In Ghana, it has been on record that mean annual temperature has increased by 1º C since 1960 at an average of 0.21ºC per decade[iv]and continues to rise for the years to come. If the temperature rises because of the climate change so will evaporation of the moisture from the soil before the crops can use the water. This is the double impact of climate change. The precipitation will reduce and evaporation will increase, leading an aggregate impact on crop that is larger than the reduction of rainfall alone. According to Ghazal et al,2010, 1ºC,2ºC and 3ºC will lead to an increased  average crop  water demand of 11%,19%and29% respectively[v].

Based on the above figures that I investigate the impact of climate change on Ghana number one cash crop Cocoa (Theobroma cacao) geographical ranges in Ghana and its impact on the society