A simulation study of crop growth and development under climate change

Peiris, D.R., Crawford, J.W. , Grashoff, C., Jefferies, R.A., Porter, J.R. and Marshall, B. (1996) A simulation study of crop growth and development under climate change. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 79(4), pp. 271-287. (doi: 10.1016/0168-1923(95)02286-4)

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Climate changes of the order predicted by Global Circulation Models have important implications for arable crop production. We have studied the impact in Scotland using simulation models for three crops of contrasting developmental type: faba or field bean, potato, spring and winter wheat. The models used were the FABEAN, SCRI water-constrained potato model and AFR-CWHEAT2 models respectively. Consideration has been made of the natural year-to-year variation in weather which causes yield variability by using 100 years of input weather data produced by a weather generator. The models were run for four Scottish sites and five Scottish soils. Based on GCM predictions, we used eight scenarios of future climate which combine both temperature and rainfall changes. Current temperature (T0) and rainfall (R0) were used as a baseline, and each of T0 + 1°C, T0 + 2°C, T0 + 3°C were used with rainfall unchanged at R0, and increased by seasonally adjusted amounts ranging from 0 to 1.5 mm per wet day. Possible enhancements due to CO2 fertilisation were not included in the study. Increased temperatures increase crop development rate, which shortens the growing season for wheat and faba bean, but, given a fixed harvest date, lengthens the season for potatoes. Yields of potato increased by up to 33% over all our sites and scenarios, whereas wheat yields decreased by 5–15% and faba bean by 11–41%. Rainfall increases of the amount suggested here do not affect the yield of potatoes or spring wheat, but winter wheat yields are reduced, due to leaching, and faba bean yields increase through alleviation of water shortage. Faba beans also show a reduction in yield variability as a result of increased rainfall. Changes in variability in wheat and potato were less pronounced and tended to reflect the increase in variability which was assumed to accompany the increased rainfall. Predictions for the changes in the frequencies of high and low yields are also presented. The results give an indication of the level of changes in crop production which would be expected in these future climates.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Crawford, Professor John
Authors: Peiris, D.R., Crawford, J.W., Grashoff, C., Jefferies, R.A., Porter, J.R., and Marshall, B.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > Adam Smith Business School > Management
Journal Name:Agricultural and Forest Meteorology
ISSN (Online):1873-2240

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