Assessment of climate change impacts on agriculture on Cayo District, Belize

Assessment of climate change impacts on agriculture on Cayo District, Belize

This report presents the results of a preliminary s tudy on the potential impact of climate change on main staple crops in the region of Cayo District, Belize. Modelled crops included dry beans, maize, and vegetables. A preliminary analysis of the impacts on breeding animals was also undertaken.

CARIWIG tools were used to provide the RCM outputs directly as climatic inputs for the climate models. The crops studied showed decreasing trends in their yields over the coming decades. An increase of the thermal stress suffered by breed ing animals because of temperature rise is also foresee. The potential of natural grasslands to feed and support livestock is projected to be reduced with climate change, according to the results. Nevertheless, actual yields are far from potential yields, given that the technological efficiency is poor. Improving techniques and management may allow farmers to achieve yields nearer to potential values, resulting in a net increase in actual yields even if potential yields decline.

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