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British Journal of Applied Science & Technology, ISSN: 2231-0843,Vol.: 12, Issue.: 5

Original-research-article

Climate Variability and Change in the Bamenda Highlands of North Western Cameroon: Perceptions, Impacts and Coping Mechanisms

 

Ndoh Mbue Innocent1*, D. Bitondo1 and Balgah Roland Azibo2

1Department of Hygiene, Faculty of Industrial Engineering, Safety and Industrial Security, The University of Douala, P.O.Box 2071, Douala, Cameroon.

2College of Technology, University of Bamenda, P.O.Box 39, Bambili, Cameroon.

Article Information
Editor(s):
(1) Hamid El Bilali, Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Bari (CIHEAM/IAMB), Sustainable Agriculture, Food & Rural Development department, Via Ceglie 9, 70010 Valenzano (Bari), Italy.
Reviewers:
(1) Kabi Prasad Pokhrel, Tribhuvan University, Nepal.
(2) Rezzoug Waffa, Ibn Khaldoun University, Algeria.
(3) R. K. Aggarwal, Dr Y S Parmar University, India.
(4) Antipas T. S. Massaawe, University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
Complete Peer review History: http://sciencedomain.org/review-history/11953

Abstracts

Aims: The study investigates how local people perceive climate change/variability, its impacts and coping mechanisms in the Bamenda highlands of north western Cameroon

Study Design: A household-based descriptive cross-sectional study.

Place and Duration of Study: The Bamenda highlands of North West western Cameroon for the farming season 2012–2013 between June 2009 and July 2010.

Methodology: A “bottom-up” approach, which seeks to gain insights from the farmers themselves based on a farm household survey was employed. Meteorological data for the region was compared with local views gathered through focus group discussions and interviews in 12 villages selected from four of the seven divisions that make up the region. Household interviews explored the local significance of seasonality, climate variability, and climate change.

Results: Rainfall is characterized by significant interannual variability, with the last ten years characterized by undefined periods of dryness and wetness. Reduced rainfall and water supply, upward shifting of certain plant species and increased incidence of diseases on crops are major issues commonly raised by respondents. Changing the planting dates 130 (15.8%), traditional moisture holding practices, 200(22.2%) and the adoption of mixed cropping, 172 (19.1%) are some of the local coping mechanisms currently adopted by farmers. Lack of knowledge concerning appropriate adaptations (37±18.5), and lack of information about climate change (29±14.5) were among the barriers to adaptation. On the demographic and socioeconomic characteristics, famers “with” and “without” barrier to climate change adaptation strategies differed significantly on most of the independent variables (p<.001).

Conclusion: The study highlights the need for adaptation to current land, forest and water management practices to maintain livelihoods in the face of changes many people are not expecting.

Keywords :

Bamenda highlands; bottom-up approach; perception; coping mechanisms; climate change and variability; Cameroon.

Full Article - PDF    Page 1-18

DOI : 10.9734/BJAST/2016/21818

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