Farmers Perception on Climate Change and Its Management Strategies: A Micro Analysis of Rajasthan

Subhash Chand and Dinesh Kumar

Abstract


The present investigation was carried out in Rajasthan aiming to study the farmer’s perception and adaptation
strategies of climate change in agriculture and to investigate the sensitivity of changes in climate and linked
impact on local agriculture among farmers. Problem Confrontation Index (PCI) was adopted to rank major
constraints. Data were collected on related parameters from 366 households of Udaipur and Bikaner districts.
Results showed that mid-drought was the major constraint perceived among farmers. A decline in income, earned
through both farming and livestock rearing stands as the most serious impact agricultural households perceived
due to climate change, followed by water scarcity and decline in crop yield. Respondents indicated a 39 per cent
decline in household income, 65 per cent decline in water for irrigation, and a 28 per cent decline in crop yield due
to the change in climate. Other problems also included livestock mortality, increase in weed infestation, and emergence
of new pests and diseases. Age of the household head, extent of literacy and access to climate information, especially
through television, were found to affect farmers’ awareness about climate change. The major cope-up strategies
included sowing of moisture tolerate short duration varieties in crop farming, arranging for fodder storage, increasing
concentrate feeds to the livestock, and protecting animals by hanging wet gunny bags on thatched shed in livestock
rearing. The results of the present study will be useful for appropriate policy actions against the ill-effect of climate
change in the study region and geographically and climatically identical regions of the country.

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