Farm-Level Adaptive Capacity to Climate Variability in Rice Production, Northern Uganda

G. O. Akongo, W. Gombya-Ssembajjwe, M. Buyinza, A. Bua


Rice is Uganda’s second major cereal crop however; its productivity has been considerably low and stagnant between 1.3 to 2.4 tons per hectare over the last 15 years. One of the underlying factors of low productivity is the current growing conditions which are not optimal for production due to climate variability. Adaptation is therefore pivotal in countering climatic challenges in production. Empirical evidence however, point to limited adaptive ability of farmers. This paper assessed farm-level adaptive capacity and its contribution to rice yield enhancement in Northern Uganda. The study was conducted on a sample of 240 rice producers in northern Uganda during 2010 - 2014 growing seasons. Adaptation capacity was measured quantitatively using indicator of access, use, knowledge and consultation levels. The study results revealed that the average farm-level adaptive capacity was 0.64 which falls in the range of moderate adapters. The study drew the following conclusions: adaptive capacity regarding use of local coping strategies was high contrary to the conventional strategies such as improved variety and herbicide. The moderate to high adaptive capacity was due farmer’s ability to access and use coping strategies than knowledge and consultation on the strategies. There was a considerable difference in yield between the low and high adapters. In order to improved farmer adaptive capacity, there is need for: early weather information sharing on specific crops and locality, research on rice production technologies, validating, strengthening and out-scaling of relevant local coping strategies, improving adoption of conventional coping strategies and access to quality seeds.

Keywords: Coping strategies, Adaptive capacity, Climate variability, Rice.

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ISSN (Paper)2224-5766 ISSN (Online)2225-0484

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