Smallholder Household and Farming Practices under Climate Change Pressure: A Case of Gusha Shinkurta Area, Awi Zone, Ethiopia

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Year:
2014
Type of Publication:
Article
Keywords:
Climate Change, Mitigation, Potato Production, Smallholder Household
Authors:
Tarekegne, Chalachew; Bernhard, Freyer; Alemayehu, Getachew; Delelegn, Yoseph
Journal:
IJRAS
Volume:
1
Number:
2
Pages:
70-81
Month:
March
ISSN:
2348-–3
Note:
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 Creative Commons License: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0/
Abstract:
The present study examined rural household practices under climate change pressures in Gusha Shinkurta locality, Awi Zone, Amhara regional state, Ethiopia using structured questionnaire and house-to-house observation and FGD methods. The results indicated that farmers are not practicing any adaptive and resilience strategies to reduce vulnerability to climatic shocks and stresses at household level. It was also found that there are no well-designed production diversification and intensification approaches to help them. There is no water harvesting practices to avert the problem. Since their living is hand to mouth, the storage system is found poorly organized. The energy system of the household is not supported by fuel saving stoves. Household energy is totally dependent on firewood which aggravates deforestation and soil loss. Chemical fertilizer price is found the highest expenditure in the rural household and there are no alternative strategies to enable farmers fully engaged in legume, alfalfa, cow manure practice to increase soil fertility; or to practice fallowing and mulching. The preparation of compost by rural households is challenged by inputs deficiency and was not able to fulfil households demand for chemical fertilizer (Urea and DAP). Potato which is dominantly produced in the locality is not preserved or stored well; or there is no any value chain system to increase its market value. The agriculture and health extension packages designed by the government to gear the rural transformation process are practiced fragmentally and they didn’t witness real change to avert climate change pressure impacts at rural household level. Even, it was found in this study that climate change pressure effects and coping mechanisms were not included in both the health and agriculture extension packages. Therefore, there is a need to increase the competence of both agriculture and health extension agents on the one hand and farmers themselves on the other hand to boost rural households’ resilience capacity for climate change.

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