Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/17/2010
Publication Date: 4/1/2012
Citation: Reddy, V., Fleisher, D.H., Timlin, D.J., Anbumozhi, V., Reddy, K.R., Yang, Y. 2012. Monitoring the vulnerability and need for adaptation planning for food security. In: Anbumozhi, V., Breiling, M., Pathmarajah, S., Reddy, V.R. editors. Climate Change in Asia and the Pacific: How can countries adapt? 1st edition. New Delhi, India: SAGE Publications India Pvt Ltd. p. 36-46. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: Most of the Earth’s carbon-based products, such as food, fiber, fuel, and carbon-based chemicals and fresh water supply come from the thin living skin covering the earth's land surface called the terrestrial ecosystem. The earth's thin mantle of soil captures, stores, and releases the water to vegetation, aquifers, streams, and lakes, and provides the major portion of the world’s fresh water supply. Within the next fifty years, human population is projected to double, and economic buying power for carbon-based products could triple. As there are no more unexplored frontiers, this increased demand from our terrestrial ecosystem will have to be met with the existing natural resource base. Added to this is the uncertainty introduced by the future global environmental changes. Potential global environmental changes include increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration, temperature, ultraviolet radiation intensity, spatial, and temporal variability in precipitation patterns. Extreme weather events such as floods, drought, and heat waves are expected to be more common in the future climate. In addition, regional increases in soil erosion and atmospheric pollution could also have negative impacts on crop productivity and the natural resource base of the planet. With existing scientific knowledge it is impossible to predict how these changes in the global climate may change the productivity of various crops worldwide and overall productivity of the terrestrial ecosystem. One way to deal with the complexity of the system and its impact on crop productivity is to develop and use mechanistic, process level computer models both at the field level and at the ecosystem level. This paper outlines some examples of the development and use of the crop models for various applications to increase crop productivity and to mitigate the harmful effects of adverse environmental variables on natural resources both in the current and in the future changing environment.