Climate change: Is the change in long term weather patterns which include temperature, wind and rainfall. Scientists and governments agree that climate change is the result of burning of fossil fuels (such as coal and oil) and associated release of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. 

Global Warming: Is the increase in the earth’s average temperature due to greenhouse gas build-up in the atmosphere.

The economic and social impacts of climate change and global warming on the agricultural sector will differ from place to place. Potential impacts may be a reduction in arable agricultural land and a decline in crop yields due to changing rainfall patterns and rising temperatures. Farmers can either adapt to these effects or/and mitigate the effect. When the right information is at hand, the right decisions can be made to avoid major risk. The SmartAgri project is a good example of a resource that provides quality information. At the link provided you will find a guide to use designed for landowners on climate change

Please read the case study on wheat farming in the Swartland area for a glimpse into the potential impact of climate change in the future: Case study

 

Some approaches to consider to be more resilient to climate change:

  • Conservation Agriculture

  • Organic production

  • Alien tree clearing

  • Improving land and water management

 

More useful links on Climate Change and Global Warming:

Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security website

Climate change in the agricultural sector within the Western Cape

Climate change in South Africa

Worldwide news on climate change

What is being done worldwide to reduce climate change

DAFF: Statement from Climate Change and Disaster Management