Southern India

Integrated assessment of climate change impacts on principal crops and farm household incomes in Southern India

Farmers in Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, and other Provinces of the Deccan Plateau are located in the rain-shadow of the Western Ghats, with meager annual rainfall averaging 500–900 mm (Fig.). The region is experiencing steadily decreasing soil fertility, falling water tables, growing dependence on groundwater for irrigation, and increasing fallow lands — characteristics that may be impacted by changes in long-term climate trends. Agriculture sustains over half of the region’s population.

Climate, crop, and economic researchers at Tamil Nadu Agricultural Univerity (TNAU) and Ancharya NG Ranga Agricultural University (ANGRAU) and partners are assessing the impact of climate change on agricultural production in Southern India and its implications for farm household income and food security. The team will apply AgMIP Protocols to integrate climate, crop and economic models and assess impacts. The goal of the project is to reduce uncertainty in climate change impacts and adaptation options.

The AgMIP Southern India Project is led by Dr. P. Paramasivam, Professor at Agricultural Economics, TNAU; Co-leaders are V. Geethalakshmi, Professor and Head of the Agro Climate Research Centre, TNAU and Dr. M. Gopinath, Professor of Agricultural and Resource Economics at Oregon State University. TNAU team members include A. Lakshmanan, Nano Science and Technology; K. Mahendran, Agricultural and Rural Management; and, R. Krishnan, Remote Sensing and GIS. ANGRAU team members include Dr. Raji Reddy, Head, Agro Climate Research Centre and Dr. D. Murthy, Soil and Crop Modeling, Agro Climate Research Centre.

This research project provides an integrated assessment of climate change impacts on principal crops and farm household incomes in Southern India. Following a characterization of farm household production systems in the region, the project will downscale climate change scenarios, simulate productivity and production impacts of crops under different systems and scenarios using hydrological and crop models, and, integrate climate model outputs with impact models. Operating within the framework of the AgMIP global project, this Southern India project is conducting a comprehensive assessment of impacts, vulnerabilities and adaptation options for the region.