Journal cover Journal topic
Earth System Dynamics An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union

Journal metrics

  • IF value: 3.635 IF 3.635
  • IF 5-year<br/> value: 3.869 IF 5-year
    3.869
  • CiteScore<br/> value: 4.15 CiteScore
    4.15
  • SNIP value: 0.995 SNIP 0.995
  • SJR value: 2.742 SJR 2.742
  • IPP value: 3.679 IPP 3.679
  • h5-index value: 21 h5-index 21
https://doi.org/10.5194/esd-2017-66
© Author(s) 2017. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Research article
06 Jul 2017
Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Earth System Dynamics (ESD).
Projected changes in crop yield mean and variability over West Africa in a world 1.5 K warmer than the pre-industrial
Ben Parkes1, Dimitri Defrance1, Benjamin Sultan1, Philippe Ciais2, and Xuhui Wang2 1Sorbonne Universités, (UPMC, Univ. Paris 06)-CNRS-IRD-MN HN LOCEAN/IPSL, 4 Place Jussieu, F-75005 Paris, France
2Laboratorie des Sciences du Climat et de l'Environnement, Commissariat a L'Energie Atomique, 91191 Gif sur Yvette, France
Abstract. The ability of a country or region to feed itself in the upcoming decades is a question of importance. The population in West Africa is expected to increase significantly in the next 30 years. The responses of food crops to short term climate change is therefore critical to the population at large and the decision makers tasked with providing food for their people. An ensemble of near term climate projections are used to simulate maize, millet and sorghum in West Africa in the recent historic and near term future.

The mean yields are not expected to alter significantly, while there is an increase in inter annual variability. This increase in variability increases the likelihood of crop failures, which are defined as yield negative anomalies beyond one standard deviation during a period of 20 years. The increasing variability increases the frequency and intensity of crop failures across West Africa. The mean return frequency between mild maize crop failures from process based crop models increases from once every 6.8 years to once every 4.5 years. The mean return time frequency for severe crop failures (beyond 1.5 standard deviations) also almost doubles from once every 16.5 years to once every 8.5 years.

Two adaptation responses to climate change, the adoption of heat-resistant cultivars and the use of captured rainwater have been investigated using one crop model in an idealised sensitivity test. The generalised adoption of a cultivar resistant to high temperature stress during flowering is shown to be more beneficial than using rainwater harvesting by both increasing yields and the return frequency of crop failures.


Citation: Parkes, B., Defrance, D., Sultan, B., Ciais, P., and Wang, X.: Projected changes in crop yield mean and variability over West Africa in a world 1.5 K warmer than the pre-industrial, Earth Syst. Dynam. Discuss., https://doi.org/10.5194/esd-2017-66, in review, 2017.
Ben Parkes et al.
Ben Parkes et al.

Data sets

Crop yield for 3 crops simulated in West Africa, by four crop models, link to model results in NetCDF format
B. Parkes
https://doi.pangaea.de/10.1594/PANGAEA.876579
Ben Parkes et al.

Viewed

Total article views: 292 (including HTML, PDF, and XML)

HTML PDF XML Total Supplement BibTeX EndNote
238 51 3 292 15 1 1

Views and downloads (calculated since 06 Jul 2017)

Cumulative views and downloads (calculated since 06 Jul 2017)

Viewed (geographical distribution)

Total article views: 292 (including HTML, PDF, and XML)

Thereof 291 with geography defined and 1 with unknown origin.

Country # Views %
  • 1

Saved

Discussed

Latest update: 22 Sep 2017
Publications Copernicus
Download
Short summary
We present an analysis of three crops in West Africa and their response to short term climate change in a world where temperatures are 1.5 K above the preindustrial levels. We show that the number of crop failures for all crops is due to increase in the future climate. We further show the difference in yield change across several West African countries and show that the yields are not expected to increase fast enough to prevent food shortages.
We present an analysis of three crops in West Africa and their response to short term climate...
Share