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Climate Variability and the Global Harvest: Impacts of El Niño and Other Oscillations on Agro-Ecosystems

By: Cynthia Rosenzweig and Daniel Hillel

Oxford University Press

Hardback | Feb 2008 | #169894 | ISBN-13: 9780195137637
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NHBS Price: £40.00 $52/€45 approx

About this book

The Earth's climate is constantly changing. Some of the changes are progressive, while others fluctuate at various time scales. The El Ni#o-la Ni#a cycle is one such fluctuation that recurs every few years and has far-reaching impacts. It generally appears at least once per decade, but this may vary with our changing climate. The exact frequency, sequence, duration and intensity of El Ni#o's manifestations, as well as its effects and geographic distributions, are highly variable. The El Ni#o-la Ni#a cycle is particularly challenging to study due to its many interlinked phenomena that occur in various locations around the globe. These worldwide teleconnections are precisely what makes studying El Ni#o-la Ni#a so important.

Cynthia Rosenzweig and Daniel Hillel describe the current efforts to develop and apply a global-to-regional approach to climate-risk management. They explain how atmospheric and social scientists are cooperating with agricultural practitioners in various regions around the world to determine how farmers may benefit most from new climate predictions. Specifically, the emerging ability to predict the El Ni#o-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) cycle offers the potential to transform agricultural planning worldwide. Biophysical scientists are only now beginning to recognize the large-scale, globally distributed impacts of ENSO on the probabilities of seasonal precipitation and temperature regimes. Meanwhile, social scientists have been researching how to disseminate forecasts more effectively within rural communities. Consequently, as the quality of climatic predictions have improved, the dissemination and presentation of forecasts have become more effective as well. This book explores the growing understanding of the interconnectedness of climate predictions and productive agriculture for sustainable development, as well as methods and models used to study this relationship.

For a clear description of climate variability and for those interested in prediction of crop yield, it is a useful publication at a modest price. Bulletin of the British Ecological Society


PROLOGUE; 1. Climate Variability in the Context of Climate Change: El Nino and Other Oscillations; 2. Impacts of El Nino-La Nina Cycles; Systems and Sectors; 3. Links to Agroecosystems: Processes and Productivity; 4. Recent El Ninos and Their Manifestations: Evolving Understanding; 5. Analysis of El Nino Effects: Methods and Models; 6. Seasonal Climate Predictions: Farmers, Planners, and Policy-makers; 7. Regional Activities in a Global Framework: Developed and Developing Countries; 8. Climate, Society, and Sustainable Development: Assessing Vulnerability, Building Adaptive Capacity; EPILOGUE

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