African Journal of
Environmental Science and Technology

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Environ. Sci. Technol.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1996-0786
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJEST
  • Start Year: 2007
  • Published Articles: 993

Full Length Research Paper

Impacts of climate change on sorghum production in North Eastern Ethiopia

Eshetu Zewdu
  • Eshetu Zewdu
  • Climate and Geospatial Research Process, Ethiopian Institutes of Agricultural Research, Melkassa, Ethiopia.
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Gebre Hadgu
  • Gebre Hadgu
  • Agronomy, Plant Science and Environmental Science, Tigray Regional Agricultural Research Institute, Mekele, Ethiopia.
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Lisanework Nigatu
  • Lisanework Nigatu
  • School of Natural Resource Management and Environmental Science, Haramaya University, Dire Dawa, Ethiopia.
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  •  Received: 03 December 2019
  •  Accepted: 06 February 2020
  •  Published: 29 February 2020


Climate change/variability is a global concern that is seriously affecting developing and least developed countries which rain-fed based agriculture is predominantly the basis for  their livelihood and socio-economic system. Adverse impacts of climate change and variability, in most developing and least developed countries like Ethiopia, is growing in time and exert pressure on agricultural systems which changes the balance among the key determinants of crop growth and yield. As a result, the demand for investigating and understanding the expected negative impacts of climate change and variability on food production is increasing. Accordingly, this study tried to investigate impacts of climate change on sorghum production using projected future climate scenarios data. Climate change scenario data for 20 global climate models were downscaled from the fifth assessment report on coupled model inter-comparison project of intergovernmental panel on climate change. CERES-Sorghum model was calibrated and validated using soil, weather and crop management data conducted at Kobo agricultural experiment site. The result revealed that yield variation was observed  across locations, climate models and time periods considered. Despite uncertainties, maximum yield reduction in sorghum is projected by the end of the 21st century when maximum insolation has reached 8.5 W/m2. In general, the result indicated that, sorghum production in north eastern Ethiopia is expected to be affected negatively in the future. Therefore, this finding would give a preliminary information for policy and decision making process to enhance climate change adaptation.


Key words: Climate change, impact assessment, crop, models, climate, sorghum.