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Smallholder Farmers’ Climate Change Adaptation Strategies in the Ethiopian Rift Valley: The Case of Home Garden Agroforestry Systems in the Gedeo Zone

Aberham Darge (), Jema Haji, Fekadu Beyene and Mengistu Ketema
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Aberham Darge: Africa Centre of Excellence for Climate Smart Agriculture and Biodiversity Conservation, Haramaya University, Dire Dawa P.O. Box 138, Ethiopia
Jema Haji: College of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences, School of Agricultural Economics, Haramaya University, Dire Dawa P.O. Box 138, Ethiopia
Fekadu Beyene: College of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences, School of Rural Development and Agricultural Innovation, Haramaya University, Dire Dawa P.O. Box 138, Ethiopia
Mengistu Ketema: Ethiopian Economics Association, Addis Ababa P.O. Box 34282, Ethiopia

Authors registered in the RePEc Author Service: Mengistu Ketema Aredo

Sustainability, 2023, vol. 15, issue 11, 1-19

Abstract: Smallholder farmers who rely on home garden agroforestry are experiencing significant impacts from climate change. To mitigate these effects, it is crucial for farmers to have access to various adaptation strategies. This study collected data from 384 randomly selected respondents in 18 kebeles over three districts, using descriptive statistics and a multivariate probit model to evaluate the factors influencing smallholder farmers’ decisions on their adaptation strategies against climate change. In Ethiopia’s Gedeo zone, this study found that smallholder farmers employ a range of adaptation methods, including expanding their agroforestry system, implementing modern agriculture techniques, conserving soil and water, diversifying their livelihoods, and employing various coping mechanisms. By analyzing data using the multivariate probit model, this study found several factors that had a significant impact on smallholder farmers’ choice of adaptation options. These factors include social network, age, education level, farming experience, household size, cultivated land size, annual income, and livestock holding. In addition, factors such as perception of climate change, previous experience of crop failure, recurrent drought, and access to information about climate change, occurrence of frost, agricultural extension contacts, access to farmer-to-farmer extension services, and perception of land infertility also influence their decision-making process. Our findings highlight the importance of improving institutional services in rural areas, promoting education on climate change, and strengthening social networks to enhance the ability of smallholder farmers to cope with the effects of climate change.

Keywords: climate change; adaptation strategies; home garden agroforestry; multivariate probit model; Ethiopia (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: O13 Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2023
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