Coupling Geo-informatics and Simulation Models for Studying Climate Risk Assessment of Rice Ecosystems and Adaptation Trends in South Asia

  • Srivastava S. K .


Rice has been the harbinger of food and nutritional security in South Asia. Increase in temperature, higher CO2 concentrations and abnormal patterns of precipitations coupled with higher frequency and intensity of drought and floods are likely to enhance considerably the climate risk to the rice agro-ecosystems. It is in this context that the study on climate risk assessment to rice based agro-ecosystems, has been conducted. A proof of the concept study was taken up using ORYZA series of soil-vegetation-atmosphere transfer (SVAT) models. These models have been extensively validated in rice agro-ecosystems of different parts of the world as well as in India to simulate the growth and yield of rice. The effects of elevated temperature and CO2 concentrations on the yield of rice grown in three agro-ecologically different environments of South and Eastern parts of India have been analyzed. While higher CO2 concentrations have usually been associated with increasing rice yield and higher temperatures have yield reducing impact, this trend however has been found to be inconsistent in case of the different rice varieties grown in the study areas. Those having higher sensitivity and larger variance in the relationship between rise in temperature and reduction in crop yield have found riskier in climate change scenarios. For those climatic sensitive regions, the adaptation need is therefore to develop rice crop varieties having higher tolerance to increase in temperature and more responsive to higher CO2 concentrations. The adaptation trends with regards to rice to the changing climate have been captured and analyzed along with cross-cutting institutional issues leading to the integration of climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction in climate sensitive South Asia.