Mapping Temperature and Rainfall Variabilities/Change and Role of ClimateSmart Agriculture on Food Security and Household Welfare in the Mixed Farming System of Southwest Ethiopia

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Addis Ababa University


Mainstreaming climate-smart agriculture (CSA) practices in most development programs/projects can increase smallholder farmers’ capacity and awareness to improve food security and establish sustainable livelihoods through resilient agricultural systems, while achieving adaptation and mitigation benefits. Hence, valuable insights can be obtained from smallholder farmers in responding to present and forthcoming challenges of climate change impacts. However, there is little research work on trade-off and synergy assessments. Taking Geshy watershed in Southwest Ethiopia as a case study area, both quantitative and qualitative data analysis were undertaken in this study. The data were collected from 15 key informant interviews, 6 focus group discussions, and 384 households to answer the following questions: (1) what are the top five preferred CSA practices for smallholder farmers in Geshy watershed when coping with the impacts of climate change? (2) What is the performance of the preferred CSA practices? And (3) which trade-offs and synergies are experienced upon the implementation of CSA practices? The study came up with the most preferred CSA practices such as the use of improved crop varieties, small-scale irrigation, improved animal husbandry, the use of efficient inorganic fertilizers, and crop rotation with legumes. The selected CSA practices showed that the productivity goal exhibit the best synergy, while the mitigation goal has trade-offs. The study also showed that the use of improved crop varieties causes high synergies in all three goals of CSA practices. Small-scale irrigation provides a medium synergy on productivity goal but high synergy for adaptation and mitigation goals. Improved animal husbandry showed a high synergy with the adaptation goal, a relatively lower synergy with the productivity goal, and a trade-off with the mitigation goal. The use of efficient inorganic fertilizers showed maximum synergy for the productivity and adaptation goals. Crop rotation with legumes also exhibited high synergy with the productivity and mitigation goals but a relatively lower synergy with the adaptation goal. These results can provide evidence to various stakeholder farmers in the value chain that the impacts of climate change can be addressed by the adoption of CSA practices. In general, CSA practices are considered indispensable for sustainable agriculture development in the face of climate change. Smallholder farmers prefer CSA practices that help to increase crop productivity and household resilience to climate change impacts. The results generate a vital foundation for recommendations to smallholder farming decision-makers. It also sensitizes actions for innovative and sustainable methods that are able to upscale the preferred CSA practices in the agricultural system in Geshy watershed of Southwest Ethiopia and other regions



Climate-smart agriculture (CSA), Synergies, Trade-offs, Productivity, Adaptation, Mitigation, Geshy watershed