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Assessment of people's perceptions and adaptations to climate change and variability in mid-hills of Himachal Pradesh, India

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A study based on farm household survey was conducted in mid-hills of Himachal Pradesh to gain insights on people’s perceptions and adaptations to climate change and variability. Results of the study indicated that 88.9 % of people perceived rise in temperature of the region while 88.4 % perceived a decreasing trend in amount of rainfall. People’s perceptions for both maximum temperature and rainfall were in accordance with results of linear regression analysis of weather data of the period from 1995- 2011 collected from meteorological station in the region. In mid hills people have started responding to climate variability particularly to rising temperature and decreasing and uncertain rainfall by shifting to other crops, varieties, early planting and other cultural measures. Limited knowledge on adaptation measures, lack of access to early warning information, unreliability of seasonal forecast and high cost of adaptation were the main barriers to adaptations in the region. Further, the study identified education of the household head, farming experience, off farm income, access to credit and extension services as factors that enhance adaptive capacity to climate change in the area. Therefore, the study indicated a need for formulating policies to address these factors. Key words: Households, temperature, rainfall, extension services
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Original Research Article
Assessment of
People s P
erceptions and
Adaptations
to
Climate Change
and
Variability
in
Mid
-
Hills
of Himachal Pradesh, India
Ndungu Charles Kimani
*
and
S.K.
Bhardwaj
Department of Environmental Science
Dr. Y S Parmar Un
iversity of Horticulture and Forestry, Nauni (Solan) India
*Corresponding author
A B S T R A C T
I
ntroduction
Mountains are vital economic and ecological
resources, high in biodiversity that provides
peop
le with much needed ecosystem
services for sustaining livelihoods. They are
the foundation for the natural processes of
climate regulation and are a vital support for
water quality, food security, and flood
protection, amongst many others. However,
climate
change and variability is threatening
the long term provision of ecosystem goods
and services from the mountain ecosystems,
thereby underlining the urgent need for
people who exclusively rely on them for
their livelihoods, particularly farmers,
to
come up with ways of adapting.
Adaptations to climate change are preceded
by farmers noticing changes in climate and
then identifying useful ones for practical use
(Maddison, 2006). Agricultural adaptation
options encompass a wide range of scales
(loc
al, regional, global) and actors (farmers,
firms, government). Micro-level options,
such as crop diversification, altering the
ISSN: 2319
-7706
Volume
4
Number
8
(201
5
) pp. 47
-60
http://
www.ijcmas.com
A study based on farm household survey was conducted in mid-hills of Himachal
Pradesh to gain insights on people s perceptions and adaptations to climate change
and variability. Results of the study indicated that 88.9 % of people perceived rise
in temperature of the region while 88.4 % perceived a decreasing trend in amount
of rainfall. People s perceptions for both maximum temperature and rainfall were
in accordance with results of linear regression analysis of weather data of the
period from 1995- 2011 collected from meteorological station in the region. In mid
hills people have started responding to climate variability particularly to rising
temperature and decreasing and uncertain rainfall by shifting to other crops,
varieties, early planting and other cultural measures. Limited knowledge on
adaptation measures, lack of access to early warning information, unreliability of
seasonal forecast and high cost of adaptation were the main barriers to adaptations
in the region. Further, the study identified education of the household head,
farming experience, off farm income, access to credit and extension services as
factors that enhance adaptive capacity to climate change in the area. Therefore, the
study indicated a need for formulating policies to address these factors.
Key words
Households,
T
emperature,
R
ainfall,
E
xtension
services
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timing of operations; market responses, such
as income diversification and credit schemes
and institutional changes help in adapting to
changing climate. Government responses,
such as removal of preserve subsidies and
improvement in agricultural markets; and
technological developments that involve
development and promotion of new crop
varieties and advances in water management
techn
iques are encouraging people to adapt
to such changes (Mendelsohn, 2001; Smit
and Skinner, 2002; Kurukulasuriya and
Rosenthal
,
2003).
There is a growing understanding that
climate variability and change has resulted
in serious challenges to development
in
Western Himalayas because of the
dependence of the region s economy on
climate sensitive natural resources. In
Himachal Pradesh for example, about 80 %
of farmers rely on rain fed agricultural for
their livelihoods, thereby predisposing
themselves to the risks and vagaries of
climate and other environmental change
drivers. In addition, the mid hill region of
Himachal Pradesh is fragile and
environmentally sensitive because of
predominance of development activities that
ignores the imperatives of mountain
specificities. The region is expected to
experience changing patterns of rainfall,
increased temperatures leading to elevated
evaporation rates, and flooding. These will
in turn lead to greater levels of land
degradation, transmission of infectious
diseas
e, and loss of surface and ground
water potential.
In north-western Himalayan region, a
significant rise in maximum, minimum and
mean annual air temperatures have been
reported by various workers (Vidya et al.,
2015; Bhardwaj and Sharma, 2013; Liu and
Ch
en, 2000). Similarly, precipitation has
been reported to have decreased in over 68
per cent of India s area over the last century
(Kumar et al. 2006). Climate and its
variability have wreaked havoc on
agricultural system in mid-hills of Himachal
Pradesh especially due to uneven
distribution of rains (Bhardwaj et al., 2010).
Moreover, the socio-economic and
biophysical effects of climate related
hazards, namely, flood, drought, erratic
rainfall, pest and disease, hailstorms, and
landslides have increased steadily in mid-
hills of Himachal Pradesh in recent years.
Even though they are exposed to these
hazards and have a low adaptive capacity,
farmers have survived and coped by making
tactical responses (adaptations). However,
these local adaptations have not been valued
and documented so far, and hence,
recognizing and documenting the local
adaptation strategies is an important entry
point to strengthen the resilience of local
people to climate change. Analyzing local
adaptation is, therefore, important to info
rm
policy for future successful adaptation of the
agricultural sector to the impact of climate
change.
The present study focussed on assessment of
adaptation strategies adopted by farmers at
farm level and factors that drive the process
of adaptation. The study captured the extent
of farmers awareness and perceptions to
climate variability and change, different
types of adaptation strategies and factors
affecting adaptation.
Materials and Methods
Profile of the study area
The study area consisted of
mid
-hill (800-
1600 m above mean sea level) regions
falling in two districts namely Kullu and
Solan of Himachal Pradesh in North
Western Himalayas. The region has mild
temperate climate with annual average
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precipitation amounting to 1150 mm. The
soils vary from sandy loam to loam in
texture. The area has a steep and rugged
terrain which amplifies biophysical and
socioeconomic vulnerability of the
communities. Overall, the Mid Hill region
occupies about 33% of the geographical area
and 53% of the cultivated area of Himachal
Pradesh State.
Research design and data collection
In order to collect primary data on farmers
perception of climate variability and change
and types of adaptations they have adopted
to these changes, a total of 275 farm
households were considered at the selected
sites of mid
-
hills in Solan and Kullu districts
during the year 2014. Two administrative
blocks were selected from each of the two
districts, namely Kullu and Naggar in Kullu
district and Solan and Kandaghat in Solan
district (Fig. 1). Households falling within
an altitudinal range of 800 to 1600m amsl
were randomly selected from the four
administrative blocks to constitute the
sample and data collected from the
household heads using a pretested
questionnaire.
Data were coded and
analyzed by using SPSS 16.
Descriptive
statistics based on summary counts of the
questionnaire structure were used to provide
insights into farmers perceptions of climate
change and variability and adaptations
adopted. Logit regression was performed to
assess factors determining adaptations
adopted by the farmers. The model
specification was worked out as per the
guidelines provided by Gujarati (2004). Its
empirical specification that was estimated is
presented below, albe
it in reduced form.
Yi= 0+ 1X1+ 2X2+ 3X3+ 4X4+ 5X5+
6X6+ 7X7+ 8X8..................................(1)
Where Yi is a dichotomous dependent
variable (farmer using any climate change
adaptation technology or not, specified as
yes=1, otherwise = 0). 0 is the Y- intercept
whereas 1- 8 is
a set of coefficients to be
estimated. X1-X8 are explanatory variables
hypothesised, based on theory and related
empirical work, to influence farmers
adaptation to climate change. Description of
explanatory variables and their expected
sign is presented
in
t
able 1.
Further, equation 1 can be rewritten as;
Logit (p) = log (p / 1- p) =
0+ 1X1+ 2X2+ 3X3+ 4X4+ 5X5+ 6X6
+ 7X7+ 8X8.......(2)
Where p is probability that Y= 1 i.e. p =
probability (Y= 1). In terms of probability,
equation 2 translates into;
p=
exp( 0+ 1X1+... 6X6+ 7X7+ 8X8)/1+
exp( 0+ 1X1+... 6X6+ 7X7+ 8X8.......(3)
In addition, secondary data on maximum
and minimum temperature and rainfall from
meteorological stations in the study area was
collected from the department of
environmental science, Dr. Y.S. Parmar
University of Horticulture and Forestry,
Nauni, Solan to supplement the analysis on
climate variability and change. The data was
tested for linear trend using linear
regression.
Results and Discussion
Temperature and precipitation chang
es
In mid-hills of Himachal Pradesh, 88.9 % of
the people were of the view that temperature
has increased in the region (Table 2).
Interestingly, only 2.3% of the people
perceived that there was no change in
temperature whereas only 5.5% were of the
view
that temperature has become uncertain
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in the region. The statistical record of
temperature data from the study area
between 1995 and 2011 showed a significant
(p < 0.05) increasing trend for maximum
temperature with a coefficient of
determination (R2) of 0.46. However, the
change was not significant for minimum
temperature (R2 = 0.03, p > 0.05) as shown
in figure 3. The results are in consonance
with the findings of other workers who have
reported an increasing trend of temperature
in the region (
Vidya
et a
l.,
2015; Bhardwaj
and Sharma, 2013; Negi
et al.,
2012).
In this region 88.4 % of people also
perceived that rainfall has decreased (Table
2). In mid-hills of Himachal Pradesh, only
9.1% of the people were of the opinion that
rainfall has become uncertain in the region.
In addition, rainfall season was perceived as
starting late by 69.8 % of the farmers and
stopping early by 70 % of them while 26.5
% and 26.2 % respectively, were uncertain
about the starting and stopping of the rain
season. These perceptions allude to great
variability in amount and distribution of rain
in mid-hills of Himachal Pradesh. Indeed, a
great number of farmers suggested a
decreased and erratic rainfall due to recent
incidents of failure of rain seasons in the
region in recent years. The results are in line
with findings of other workers who reported
variability in amount and distribution of
rainfall in mid-hills of Himachal Pradesh
(Vidya
et al., 2015; Bhardwaj and Sharma,
2013 and Vishwa et al., 2013). The famers
perceptions of precipitation are in
accordance with rainfall statistical data from
weather stations in the region whose linear
regression analysis results indicated a
significant (p < 0.05) decrease in amount of
rainfall with time (R2 = 0.19) as shown in
figure 4. Similar studies several other parts
of India indicate that most farmers perceive
temperature to have became warmer and
rainfall reduced over the past decade or two
(Vedwan, 2006; Sahu and Mishwa, 2013;
Bantilan
et al., 2013; Jodha et al., 2012;
Shashidahra and Reddy, 2012; Varadan and
Kumar, 2014).
The main adaptation options adopted by
farmers in the face of increased temperature
in the region include change of crop variety
(61.6%), planting early maturing crops
(50%), change of planting dates (47.4%) and
prac
ticing mixed cropping (39.9%) as shown
in
table 3. Despite perceived increase in
temperature and consequent dry condition,
only 32.5% designated planting of drought
resistant crops as an adaptation strategy.
Other adaptation options that were not
widely adopted by farmers in the region
include irrigation (18.7%), reusing water
(32.8%), use of water harvesting schemes
(31%), changing from crops to livestock
(4.9%) and reducing the number of livestock
(5.6%).
Out of the total farmers who have adapted to
cha
nging climatic situation like rainfall,
52.4% have gone for early maturing crops,
52.4% build water harvesting schemes, 40%
irrigate more, 47.4% change planting dates,
39.9% mixed cropping and 33% implement
soil conservation techniques (Table 3).
Farmers have also adopted growth of
drought resistant crops (32.5%), mix crops
and livestock (32.8%), change from crops to
livestock (4.9%) and reduce number of
livestock (5.6%).
Interestingly, adaptations induced by
perceptions of changing rainfall patterns
seem
to differ from those induced by
changing temperature. While adopting a new
crop variety is the main strategy used to
adapt to increasing temperature, building
water
-harvesting schemes is a popular
adaptation strategy to those experiencing the
effects of decreased precipitation. The high
percentage of farmers who has adopted
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change of crops as an adaptation strategy
against changes in temperature can be
explained by pronounced rise of temperature
in higher altitudes. Studies on climate
change show that rise in temperature will be
felt more in higher altitudes (IPCC, 2014;
Liu and Chen, 2000). Consequently, rising
temperature in mid-hills of Himachal
Pradesh has gravely affected chilling
requirements of apples growth thereby
forcing farmers to replace apple with other
crops like pomegranate, kiwi and vegetables
which require relatively low temperatures.
Similar findings by Vedwan (2006) while
working in Himachal Pradesh indicated that
some crops like maize, wheat and lentils are
now growing at higher altitudes where they
could not grow before.
Use of harvesting water structures as a
popular adaptation strategy against reducing
rainfall can be attributed to pronounced
inter
-seasonal and annual monsoon rainfall
variability in the mid-hills of Himachal
Pradesh.
Population pressure and
concomitant development activities have
also been putting pressure on existing water
sources as also reported by Singh and
Kandari (2012) and Mall et al.
(2006).
In the region of mid-hills of Himachal
Pradesh, the level of adaptation to the
changes in temperature and precipitation is
low and farmers are susceptible to socio-
economic and biophysical vulnerabilities of
climate change. The low adoption level of
adaptation strategies in the region maybe
ascribed to high cost of adaptation, low
socio
-economic status of farmers, steep and
hilly slopes, lack of space for water
harvesting due to hilly terrain and lack of
information on climate change impacts and
adaptation options. Similar findings on
barriers to adaptation to climate chang
e have
been reported in other studies (Nabilokolo
et
al.,
2012; Juana et al., 2013; Fosu-
Meusah
et al.,
2010; Acquah
-de and Onumah, 2011).
Barriers to adaptations
In mid-hills of Himachal Pradesh, high cost
of adaptation was perceived by the people a
s
one of the barriers to adaptation to climate
change (Table 4). This perception was
followed by limited knowledge on
adaptation measures (93.8%), lack of early
warning information (87.2%), unreliability
of seasonal forecast (88 %), lack of access to
techn
ology (89.1 %), lack of labour (72%),
steep terrain (79.9 %) and poor
communication infrastructure (65%).
Similarly, 34% of the respondents cited lack
of access to water as barrier to adaptation.
Lack of extension services (47.4%),
improved crops/seeds (50%) and irrigation
facilities are also perceived as main barriers
to adaptation. The data further indicated that
the barriers to adaptation in the region can
be categorised as personal, institutional and
technological. In the region it was observed
that edu
cated people adapted in a better way,
compared to uneducated ones. Similarly,
wealthy people were noticed to have more
capability to adapt than those with less
income. Moreover, institutional factors such
as access to extension services and
information source as well as access to
institutional credit have a strong positive
influence on adoption of adaptation
practices. In the same vein, technological
factors such as genetically improved
varieties, efficient and reliable weather
forecasting stations and cheap and
affordable irrigation facilities have a high
level of influence on adaptation adoption.
Similar studies have found a strong positive
relationship between adoption of adaptation
practices and wealth, education, knowledge,
access to extension services, information
source and institutional credit, availability of
genetically improved varieties, irrigation
facilities and efficient and reliable weather
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forecasting services (Satishkumar et al.,
2013; Ravi et al., 2011; Idrsi et al., 2012;
Deressa
et al., 2008; Onyeneke and
Madukwe, 2010).
Factors determining farmers adoption of
adaptation strategies to climate change
and variability
Results of logistic regression to test effects
of farming experience of the household
head, level of education of the hou
sehold
head, annual off-farm household income,
annual on farm household income,
household size, gender of the household
head and household access to credit and
extension services on farmers adaptation to
climate change and variability indicated that
the eight predictor model provided a
statistically significant improvement over
the constant only model, X2 (8, N = 275) =
286.772, p = 0.00. The Nagelkerke R2
indicated that the model accounted for 88 %
of the total variance. The correct prediction
rate was ab
out 95 %. The Wald tests showed
that farming experience, education, off farm
income and access to credit and extension
services significantly predicted the farmers
adaptation status (Table 5). However,
household size, on farm income and gender
of the hous
ehold head were not significant.
It is evident that there is a positive
relationship between farmers adaptation
strategies to climate change and variability
and level of education of household head,
with the odds of farmer adapting increasing
by a factor of 1.010, for every unit increase
in level of education (coefficient = 0.237;
odds ratio = 1.010). This implies that higher
level of education leads to an increase in the
probability of adopting new technologies. It
increases one's ability to receive, dec
ode,
and understand information relevant to
making innovative decisions. The role of
education in enhancing adaptive capacity
was also highlighted by Acquah-de and
Onumah (2011) from their work on
determinants of farmers adaptation to
climate change and variability in western
Ghana.
The relationship between farmers adoption
of adaptation strategies to climate change
and variability and off and on farm incomes
was positive, implying a higher level of
household adaptation with increased
incomes. However, off farm income was
significant, with the odds of farmer adapting
increasing by a factor of 1.010 for every unit
increase in off farm income (coefficient =
0.010; odds ratio = 1.010; p < 0.05) while on
farm income was not significant, with the
odds of farmer adapting increasing by a
factor of 1.001 for every unit increase in on
farm income (coefficient = 0.001; odds ratio
= 1.001; p > 0.05). Off farm income is more
reliable than on farm income since it is not
affected by climate change and variability
like the later. It is therefore more
instrumental in influencing the households
wealth, thereby enhancing risk bearing
capacity of the people. Thus, households
with higher income and greater assets are in
better position to adopt new farming
technologies. Strong positive relationship
between farmers adaptation strategies to
climate change and variability and off
income was also noticed by Sofoluwe et al.
(2011) and Lyimo
et al.
(2010).
Farming experience got a positive
coefficient and an odds ratio of 36.593,
implying that the odds of farmer adapting
increases by a factor of 36.593 for every unit
increase in farming experience. In other
words, farmers adaptation to climate
change and variability is contingent upon
years of farming and the adaptation
increases
with increase in farming
experience. This is because experienced
farmers have better knowledge and
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information on changes in climatic
conditions and crop and livestock
management practices. Similar studies by
Nhemachana and Hassan (2007) on farmers
adapt
ation strategies to climate change and
variability in South Africa, Zambia and
Zimbabwe indicated that experienced
farmers have an increased likelihood of
using portfolio diversification, changing
planting dates and changing the amount of
land under produc
tion.
Access to credit also got a positive
coefficient of 2.748 and an odds ratio of
15.61. This means that there is a positive
relationship between access to credit and
farmers adoption of adaptation strategies.
Farmers in the region who access credit are
15.61 times more likely to adapt than those
who do not. This can be ascribed to the fact
that any fixed investment requires the use of
owned or borrowed capital. Similar studies
by Fosu-
Mensah
et al. (2010) indicated that
adoption of technology requires large initial
investments, which generally get hampered
by lack of borrowing capacity.
The coefficient of farmers access to
extension services was 2.861 which
translated into an odds ratio of 17.475,
implying a positive relation between
farmers access to extension services and
adoption of adaptation strategies. Further,
farmers accessing extension services are
17.475 times more likely to adapt compared
to those who do not have access to such
services. This is because access to extension
services enhances the efficiency of adoption
of new technologies by exposing farmers to
new information and technical skills.
It also enhances access to climate
information which may increase the
likelihood of uptake of adaptation
techniques by the farmers. These fin
dings
are corroborated by similar studies by
Gbetibouo (2009) in South Africa which
indicated that farmers with access to
extension services are likely to perceive
changes in climate because extension
services provide information about climate
and weather. Consequently, such farmers
adopt appropriate adaptations to climate
change and variability.
Moreover, results showed that there is a
positive relationship between farmers
adoption of adaptation strategies and gender
of household head with male headed
households being 1.915 times more likely to
adapt compared to female headed
households (coefficient= 0.650; odds ratio=
1.915). However, the relationship was not
significant (P > 0.05). This indicated that
gender of the household head has an
influence on farmers decision to adopt
adaptation practices Similar findings have
been reported by Okonya et al. (2013). In
most of the developing countries, women
have lesser access to critical resources like
land, cash and labour which undermines
their ability to carry out labour-
intensive
agricultural innovations.
However, in some other cases female
headed households could more likely take
up climate change adaptation methods. This
is possible in situations where men are based
in towns and much of the agricultural wo
rk
is done by the women. Thus, in this case,
women have more farming experience and
information on various management
practices and how to change them, based on
available information on climatic conditions
and other factors such as markets and food
needs of the households.
Household size registered a coefficient of -
0.360 and an odds ratio of 0.698 implying
that the odds of farmer adapting decreases
by a factor of 0.698 for every unit increase
in household size.
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Table
.1 Description of explanatory variables used to predict farmers adaptation to climate
change in mid
-hills of Himachal Pradesh
Variable
Description
Expected sign
X1 Education level of the household head (Years of schooling) +
X2 Household size (number of family members in household)
+ /
-
X3 Off farm income (annual income from nonfarm activities) +
X4
On farm income (annual income from farming activities)
+
X5 Farming experience (household head number of years of
farming)
+
X6
Gender of household head (1= male; 0= female)
+
X7
Access
to credit (1= yes; 0= Otherwise
) +
X8 Access to extension services (1= yes; Otherwise= 0) +
Table.2
People s perception (%) on changes in weather quantity in mid-
hills of Himachal
Pradesh
People s
perception
Temperature
Rainfall
Do not know
0.8 0.4
Decreasing
2.5 88.4
No change
2.3 1.8
Increasing
88.9 0.4
Uncertain
5.5 9.1
Table.3
People s perception (%) on adaptation options in response to changes in temperature and
precipitation in mid
-
hills of Himachal Pradesh
Percep
tion of weather elements
Adaptation options
Temperature
Precipitation
Change crop variety
61.6 32
Change planting dates
47.4 47.4
Mixed cropping
39.9 39.9
Plant drought resistant crops
32.5 32.5
Plant early maturing crops
50.4 50.4
Mix crops and livestock
32.8 32.8
Build water harvesting scheme
31 52.4
Practice reuse of water 32.8 32.8
Implement soil conservation techniques
- 33
Irrigate more
18.7 40
Change from crops to livestock 4.9 4.9
Reduce number of livestock
5.6 5.6
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Table.4
People s perception (%) to b
arriers for adaptation in mid
-
hills of Himachal Pradesh
Adaptation Hindrance
% of respondents
Lack of access
to early warning information
87.20
Unreliability of seasonal forecasts
88.00
Lack of labour
72.60
High cost of adaptation
95.60
Lack of a
cc
ess to improved crops/seeds
50.40
Ineffectiveness of indigenous methods 76.30
Lack of government subsidy on farm inputs
56.90
Limited knowledge on adaptation measures
93.80
Absence of government policy on climate change
82.10
Lack of extension service
s 47.40
Inaccess to water
34.30
Shortage of land
6.90
Insecure property rights
1.80
Inaccess to irrigation facilities
69.00
Inaccess to technology
89.1
Steep Terrain 79.90
Poor communication infrastructure e.g. roads
65.00
Table.5
Determinants of
farmers adaptation to climate change in mid-
hills of Himachal Pradesh
Explanatory
variable
Estimated
coefficient
S.E of
coefficient
Odds ratio
P value
Farming
experience
3.600 0.741 36.583 0.000***
Education
0.237 0.102 1.268 0.020**
Annual off-
farm
income
0.010 0.004 1.010 0.17**
Annual on-
farm
income
0.001 0.003 1.001 0.827
Household size
-0.360 0.211 0.698 0.088
Gender
0.650 0.630 1.915 0.302
Credit
access
2.748 0.795 15.610 0.001***
Extension
access
2.861 0.822 17.475 0.000***
Constant
-17.912 3.253 0.000 0.000***
Note
: ***, ** indicates significant at 1% and 5% level of significant, respectively
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Figure.1
Map of the study area showing selected administrative blocks in
mid
-
hills of Himachal Pradesh
Figure.
2
Trend of maximum temperature
data for Solan and Kullu districts in mid
-
hills of
Himachal Pradesh
Figure.3
Trend of minimum temperature data for Solan and Kullu districts in mid
-
hills of
Himachal Pradesh
Int.J.Curr.
Microbiol.App.Sci
(2015)
4(
8
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57
Figure.4
Rainfall distribution trend in mid
-hills of Himachal Pradesh
Thi
s may be explained by the fact that
households with many family members
might have diverted part of their labour
force to off-farm activities in an attempt to
earn income to ease the consumption
pressure imposed by a large family size.
Similar findings have also been reported by
Tizale (2007). However in other cases and
as also reported by Tekelwold et al.
(2006),
household size acting as a proxy to labour
availability and influence the adoption of a
new technologies by reducing availability of
the labour c
onstraints.
Studies on farmers perception regarding
climate change indicated that the mid-
hills
of Himachal Pradesh have become warmer
and drier due to less rainfall. In the region
the rising temperature and reducing rainfall
is affecting agriculture and is becoming a
matter of serious concern. Changing climate
situations have brought forth new problems
and questions the solutions to which have
been generated by combining farmers
ingenuity and their trial and error efforts like
shifting to new crops and their varieties,
changing planting dates and by adopting rain
water harvesting technologies among others.
However, factors such as education of the
household head, farming experience, off
farm income, access to credit and extension
services influenced farmers adaptive
capacity and hence these need to be
addressed in the region.
Acknowledgement
The first author is grateful to Indian Council
of Cultural Relations (ICCR) for funding his
PhD studies. The Department of
Environmental Science, Dr. Y.S Parmar
University of Horticulture and Forestry,
Nauni
- Solan (HP) India, is highly
appreciated for providing facilities for
conducting the study.
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... It was evident from the results that farmers were reluctant to take up the second crop, especially pulse, during the summer season due to an increase in hot days. Earlier studies in numerous parts of India found that the majority of farmers observed an increase in temperature and a decrease in rainfall over time [47][48][49][50]. Dhanya and Ramachandran [22] also observed delayed onset of monsoon and a decrease in rains under the semiarid region of Tamil Nadu, India. ...
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... In NER, a majority of farmers are already aware of climate change, has been observing unusual climate events in the last ten to fifteen years, and reports income losses attributed to climate change, indicating that the farmers' willingness to implement adaptation measures designed to reduce the vulnerability of the agricultural sector in NER is potentially high. Studies conducted in other regions of India as well as in neighbouring countries showed similar results: in the Kanchandzonga Biosphere Reserve of India, located in the mountainous region of Sikkim, 85% of households perceived changes in climate (Shukla et al. (2016), in Himachal Pradesh, a hilly region of India, almost 89% of farmers were aware of rising temperatures and 88% stated that they had witnessed reduction in rainfall (Kimani and Bhardwaj 2015), in West Bengal, almost all interviewees perceived climate change (Dey et al. 2018), and in Bangladesh, 75% of respondents said they were aware of increasing temperatures and perceived irregularities in rainfall reported Rahman and Alam (2016). These numbers show that the awareness about climate change is high in the farmer communities of the wider region and not limited to either mountainous, hilly or flat regions. ...
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... Previous studies (Kimani & Bhardwaj, 2015;Mutunga et al., 2017;Ndambiri et al., 2012) reported that farmers adopt different crop varieties, change of planting dates, crop diversification, changing land area under cultivation. Moreover, this also entailed increased use of irrigation, increased use of fertilizers and pesticides, increased use of soil and water conservation technologies, and mulching and manure adoption to adapt to CCV. ...
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