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Tejler, Johan, 2019. Farmers' perceptions of climate change : a quantitative study of Scanian farmers. Second cycle, A2E. Alnarp: SLU, Department of Biosystems and Technology (from 130101)

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Abstract

In this thesis, farmers` perceptions of climate change have been examined. Questionnaires were sent to 400 cereal farmers in the southernmost county of Sweden, Scania, of whom 221 replied. Four themes have been investigated: the farmers perceptions on past climate changes, their perceptions on future climate changes, their opinions on how the authorities are managing the climate change issue and their opinions on adaptation to climate change.

Study results indicate that 9 out of 10 farmers had experienced some type of climate change over the last 15 years. The most common notion was that the climate has become more “periodized” and that winters have become milder. As many as 97% of the farmers thought that the climate will change during the coming 30 years, but only 67% believes that temperatures will rise. There are different opinions on whether climate change will be mostly positive or negative for agriculture in Scania, although most of the farmers think that the negative consequences will dominate.

Most respondents think that the amount of information they receive from authorities, about climate change, is satisfactory. However, the majority thinks that the quality, or relevance, of the information is poor. They also think that more should be done in Sweden in order both to mitigate- and adapt to climate change. Large differences occur about the opinions on the EU-membership, in light of climate change, but most respondents are positive towards the membership.

Nine out of ten farmers have already started to adapt to climate change or consider doing so. The adaptations preferred by most farmers concern water management. Both improved drainage and expanded irrigation are seen as relevant adaptation measures. Many farmers also consider “reduced soil disturbance” as an adaptation measure to climate change. When it comes to crop choice, it seems as most adaptations are done as preventive measures to reduce risks rather than to take advantage of new opportunities.

The results of this study indicate similarities to other studies. In relation to farmers in other contexts i.e. in developed nations, the Scanian farmers are generally more aware of climate change. In some regards the farmers expectations for future climate change are in line with scientific predictions for Scania, but for other aspects, there are discrepancies. The farmers tend to underestimate the future temperature rises but overestimate the increase in periodized and more extreme weather.

The current study can be of good value for the authorities engaged in agriculture and climate change related issues. To possess knowledge of the farmers` opinions may facilitate the cooperation between authorities and farmers. This is an aspect of high importance from an agroecological viewpoint, where good communication and integration of different actors in the food system web, is emphasized.

Main title:Farmers' perceptions of climate change
Subtitle:a quantitative study of Scanian farmers
Authors:Tejler, Johan
Supervisor:Albertsson, Johannes and Palsdottir, Anna Maria
Examiner:Blennow, Kristina
Series:UNSPECIFIED
Volume/Sequential designation:UNSPECIFIED
Year of Publication:2019
Level and depth descriptor:Second cycle, A2E
Student's programme affiliation:LM005 Agroecology - Master's programme 120 HEC
Supervising department:(LTJ, LTV) > Department of Biosystems and Technology (from 130101)
Keywords:farmers perceptions, climate change, questionnaires, IPA, adaptation, Scania
URN:NBN:urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-s-10378
Permanent URL:
http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-s-10378
Subjects:Meteorology and climatology
Social sciences, humanities and education
Language:English
Deposited On:03 May 2019 13:15
Metadata Last Modified:04 May 2019 01:00

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