Climate Change and Variability: Local Farmers Perception in Rombo District, Kilimanjaro Region, Tanzania
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Abstract: Agriculture, the highly vulnerable sector to climate change is the main sources of livelihood in Africa, and in Tanzania it is the backbone of the economy. Agriculture has been impacted by climate change and therefore increasing food insecurity and poverty level. As response farmers have adopted different adaptation measures depending on geographical location and social economic status. This study therefore, aimed at identifying and documenting climate stresses and perception on climate change in Rombo District. The study was carried out in Mahango and Nguduni villages and employed both qualitative and quantitative techniques. Questionnaire represented quantitative approach while focus group discussion, key informant interviews and direct observation represented a qualitative approach. About 5% (80) of 1576 total household were randomly selected while 5 key informant and 10 focus group members were purposevely selected. Descriptive statistics and thematic analysis techniques were used to analyze the data. Findings show that, prevalence of prolong dry spell, drought and below average rainfall has led to food shortage, and poor household income; therefore increasing poverty level among the household. People experienced different climate stress such as dry spell, extreme temperature, drought, water shortage and below average and above average rainfall. About 42.5% respondents perceived temperature to have increased and decreased in rainfall for the past 30 years. The study recommends local adaptation strategies to be streamlined to relevant policies in order to enhance local farmers’ adaptive capacity and become helpful in facing both present and future climate change effects.