Adaptation strategies used by small holder farmers in the context of climate change impact in Binga.

Author: Moyo, Siphilisiwe

This study was set out to investigate on the adaptation strategies used by small holder farmers to climate change impact. This has been done through evaluating the extent through which climate change has impacted on the livelihoods of the small holder farmers in Binga, identifying measures taken by small holder farmers in Binga towards climate change adaptation and revealing the opportunities and challenges encountered by small holder farmers in climate change adaptation. This research was conducted in Binga, a rural area in Zimbabwe which is faced with high temperatures, erratic rainfall patterns, high poverty levels coupled with infertile and unsuitable land for farming. The research was both qualitative and quantitative but more qualitative as it required discovering the perceptions and experiences of small holder farmers with regards to climate change as which would have been difficult to uncover through only qualitative research. With regards to adapting to climate change small holder farmers in Binga plant small grains such as sorghum and millet, practice dry planting , zero tillage, early ploughing and use of fertilizers which are more suitable adaptation options. In response to the impact of climate change many farmers sought to sell their livestock so as to buy maize. Agriculture, Technical and Extensions Services (AGRITEX) and NGOs were noted to be the key actors in climate risk management. Increasing environmental concerns along with changes in climate create challenges in the performance of small scale farming because small scale farmers are mostly unable to account and adjust to the environmental threats due to insufficient human, social, financial capitals and information.