Technological challenges of climate change adaptation in Nigeria: Insights from Enugu State

Type Journal Article - African Technology Policy Studies Network
Title Technological challenges of climate change adaptation in Nigeria: Insights from Enugu State
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2011
Climate change impacts depend on a range of the climate parameters' changes and on the country's
social, cultural, geographical and economic backgrounds. The location and size of, and the characteristics
relief in Nigeria especially Enugu state give rise to a variety of climates ranging from tropical rainforest climate
along the coasts to the sahel climate to the northern parts of the country. Climate change is also threatening
not only the sustainable development of socio-economic activities of any nation but also to the totality of
human existence. Nigeria and even Enugu State begun to feel the effects of climate change as the
frequency and intensity of extreme events like droughts and floods have increased.
This climate change has direct impacts on biodiversity, agriculture, water resources, forests, and coastal
areas. Nigeria and Enugu State in particular is currently experiencing increasing incidence of disease,
declining agricultural productivity, increasing number of heat waves, unreliable or erratic weather patterns,
flooding, declining rainfall in already desert-prone areas in the north causing increasing desertification,
decreasing food production in central regions, and destruction of livelihoods by rising waters in coastal
areas where people depend on fishing and farming. Climate change is making some land uninhabitable
and affecting water supplies, threatening people's basic needs, impacting negatively to the agricultural
farming systems and triggering displacement.
In 1999 and 2000, more than 200,000 people were displaced by floods in Niger State. In 1988, flooding in
Kano State displaced more than 300,000 people. About a million people living in the low-lying plains of the
River Niger are considered to be at risk. Flooding is recorded every year in all the states along the Niger River
and its tributaries, frequently causing disasters. In Enugu no fewer than 300 families have been rendered
homeless in “Ameke Ngwo” and “Ngwo Uno” communities in Udi local council of Enugu state in the year
2009 following the destruction of their houses and economic trees worth millions of naira by a wind storm
which wrecked havoc in the area which is one of the resultant effects of climate change. Presently, due to
climate change there are many agricultural farming systems adaptation by rural communities/farmers in
Nigeria especially in Enugu state.
Farmers in the study area pointed out that the manifestations of climate change are mainly through
decrease in rainfall pattern, increase in pest infestation in both crops and animals, heavy loss of pasture
land/vegetation and premature ripening of crops. Also the result of the findings shows that the farming
systems stopped in the last ten (10) years by the farmers in Enugu state due to climate change include sole
cropping, continuous cropping, shifting cultivation and crop rotation among others.

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