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Research Project: Enhancement of Sugarcane Germplasm for Development of Stress Tolerant, High Yielding Cultivars

Location: Sugarcane Field Station

Title: Climate change and sugarcane production: potential impact and mitigation strategies

Author
item Zhao, Duli
item LI, YANG-RUI - Guangxi Academy Of Agricultural Sciences

Submitted to: International Journal of Agronomy
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/17/2015
Publication Date: 10/26/2015
Citation: Zhao, D., Li, Y. 2015. Climate change and sugarcane production: potential impact and mitigation strategies. International Journal of Agronomy. 2015:10 pages. doi.org/10.1155/2015/547386.

Interpretive Summary: Sugarcane production and sustainability have been directly and indirectly affected and will continue to be considerably affected by increases in the frequency and intensity of extreme (drought, floods, high temperatures, tornados, hurricanes) environmental conditions due to climate change. These negative effects are even greater in most developing countries than in developed countries because the developing countries have relatively low adaptive capacity, high vulnerability to natural hazards, and poor forecasting systems and mitigating strategies. The negative effects of climate change on sugarcane production are likely to worsen significantly in the future, especially if green house gas emissions remain high. Agricultural scientists and policy makers need to work closely in order to mitigate the negative effects and to improve productivity by multidisciplinary approaches. Improving the resilience of sugarcane agricultural systems to climate change requires protection of the natural resource for sustainability. Reducing production costs by introduction and development of creative technologies and expanding use of sugarcane products can improve sustainability and profitability.

Technical Abstract: Sugarcane (Saccharum officinarum L.) is an important crop for sugar and bioenergy worldwide. Atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration has increased by about 30% since the mid-18th century. The increasing greenhouse gas emission and global warming during climate change clearly result in the increase frequency of extreme weather and environmental events. Climate change is expected to have some important consequences for sugarcane production in the world, especially the developing countries because of relatively low adaptive capacity, high vulnerability to natural hazards, and poor forecasting systems and mitigating strategies. Sugarcane production may have been negatively affected and will continue to be considerably affected by increases in the frequency and intensity of extreme environmental conditions due to climate change. The degree of climate change impact on sugarcane is associated with geographic location and adaptive capacity. Existing adaptation strategies for sugarcane production can help offset many, but not all effects over the next 30-50 years. The negative effects of climate change on sugarcane production are likely to worsen significantly in the future, especially if greenhouse gas emissions remain high. Agricultural scientists and policy makers need to work closely in order to mitigate the negative effects and to improve productivity and profits by multidisciplinary approaches, such as crop improvement and protection, crop modeling and prediction, environment conservation, and management practices. Improving the resilience of sugarcane agricultural systems to climate change requires protection of the natural resource for sustainability.