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Vulnerability of Other Field Crop (OFC) Cultivating Farmers to Climatic Variability – A Study in Palugaswewa Cascade and Mahaweli System H in Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka

Authors:

S. D. N. M. Senadeera ,

University of Peradeniya, LK
About S. D. N. M.
Postgraduate Institute of Agriculture
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N. D. K. Dayawansa,

University of Peradeniya, LK
About N. D. K.
Department of Agricultural Engineering, Faculty of Agriculture
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R. P. De Silva

University of Peradeniya, LK
About R. P.
Department of Agricultural Engineering, Faculty of Agriculture
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Abstract

Frequently occurring extreme weather events have caused agricultural production losses in considerable amounts in the dry zone of Sri Lanka. Hence, it is important to understand the farmer groups and the systems that are highly vulnerable to climate change before proposing remedial measures. Paddy is the main crop cultivated by the dry zone farmers in Sri Lanka. The majority of the farmers cultivate paddy during the Maha season while Other Field Crops (OFC) are cultivated in the Yala season in the same land due to water scarcity. This study developed a climate vulnerability index for OFC farmers and tested the applicability of the developed vulnerability index using major and minor irrigation systems. For this study, secondary data was collected from relevant government institutions and field- level organizations. Yield data, demographic data, socioeconomic data, and marketing data were collected through a questionnaire survey. Indicators were selected under three dimensions of vulnerability, representing physical and environmental factors, socioeconomic factors, and external assistance factors. All indicators were calculated for each major and minor irrigation system separately. The results revealed that, farmers in both irrigation systems are highly vulnerable to the external assistance index while scoring low in the physical and environmental index and the socio-economic index. The minor irrigation scheme has a high external assistance to climate change compared to the major irrigation scheme. Overall vulnerability index results Indicated that, the climatic vulnerability of farmers in minor irrigation system is higher (61.6) than in major irrigation systems (57.1). Thus, these types of indices are useful in assessing the status of the farmers so that interventions can be applied to reduce their vulnerability and facilitate their livelihoods.

How to Cite: Senadeera, S.D.N.M., Dayawansa, N.D.K. and De Silva, R.P., 2023. Vulnerability of Other Field Crop (OFC) Cultivating Farmers to Climatic Variability – A Study in Palugaswewa Cascade and Mahaweli System H in Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka. Tropical Agricultural Research, 34(1), pp.31–42. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/tar.v34i1.8602
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Published on 01 Jan 2023.
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