African Journal of
Agricultural Research

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Agric. Res.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1991-637X
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJAR
  • Start Year: 2006
  • Published Articles: 6668

Full Length Research Paper

Climate analysis for agricultural improvement of the Economic Community of West African States according to Köppen and Thornthwaite

MÃœLLER, Marcela dos Santos
  • MÃœLLER, Marcela dos Santos
  • Crop Science Department, Esalq, University of São Paulo (USP), Piracicaba, SP, C.P. 9. 13.418-900, Brazil.
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DOURADO-NETO, Durval
  • DOURADO-NETO, Durval
  • Crop Science Department, Esalq, University of São Paulo (USP), Piracicaba, SP, C.P. 9. 13.418-900, Brazil.
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TIMM, Luís Carlos
  • TIMM, Luís Carlos
  • Rural Engineering Department, Faem, Universidade Federal de Pelotas (UFPEL), Pelotas, RS, C.P. 354, 96.001-970, Brazil.
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REICHARDT, Klaus
  • REICHARDT, Klaus
  • Soil Physics Laboratory, Cena, University of São Paulo (USP), Piracicaba, SP, C.P. 96. 13.416-903, Brazil.
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SARTORI, Felipe Fadel
  • SARTORI, Felipe Fadel
  • Crop Science Department, Esalq, University of São Paulo (USP), Piracicaba, SP, C.P. 9. 13.418-900, Brazil.
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FELISBERTO, Guilherme
  • FELISBERTO, Guilherme
  • Crop Science Department, Esalq, University of São Paulo (USP), Piracicaba, SP, C.P. 9. 13.418-900, Brazil.
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  •  Received: 19 February 2018
  •  Accepted: 10 April 2018
  •  Published: 07 June 2018

Abstract

The Economic Community of West African States (also known as ECOWAS from its name in French: Union Économique et Monétaire Ouest-Africaine) is composed of eight countries: Benin, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, Niger, Senegal and Togo. This study is restricted to ECOWAS because it stems from a survey mission headed by the second author and aims to characterize the climate of the territory as a basis for better land use by improving agricultural activities. The climate classification systems proposed by Köppen (1900) and Thornthwaite (1948) were used to carry out the study. As expected, most of the territory belonging to ECOWAS was classified as arid. With respect to the improvement of agricultural management, the climate classes found for the territory give a gross idea of the potential of each country for agricultural exploitation. The climate diversity over relatively short distances obligates detailed studies on land adaptability for growing food crops, which is in practice not made based on scientific criteria. This study shows that there is still room for an expansion of the area for agricultural purposes, and in this way, increasing food production.

Key words: Africa, Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), agriculture, crops.