The Nepalese economy is largely based on agriculture, which accounts for around 35% of GDP. Alongside this, roughly 65% of the Nepalese population is a part of the agricultural industry. The Nepalese farming system is predominantly made up of small-scale farming, around half of which is dependent on natural rainfall. Rainfall and other climatic factors are critical to crop yields; only 46.5% of Nepalese agricultural land is irrigable, of which only 69.5% is actually irrigated. Recent empirical studies indicate that 70% of the performance of crop production can be explained by the climatic variability linked with temporal weather conditions.
The agriculture sector has already been affected by floods, droughts and erratic rainfall. Climate change is expected to lead to further increased dryness in drought-prone areas and to wetter conditions in wet areas. These conditions are already beginning to cause alarming signs of a sharp and sustained decline in food security in Nepal.
We have five major focus areas in Climate Change and Agriculture sector:
- Assessing the socio-economic vulnerability of rural people to climate change
- Documenting the potential impacts of climate change on natural resources
- Identifying the trends of climate change and the farmer’s perceptions of these changes
- Evaluating the impact of climate change on agricultural production
Identifying choices for adaptation measures that farmers are using to mitigate potential impacts of climate change on agriculture