The impacts of climate change upon agricultural systems are well established. Such changes will influence the type of crops that thrive (or don’t survive) in different agricultural zones, change traditional cropping calendars for local communities and influence the way in which pests and weeds emerge and are controlled. Papua New Guinea is a country of significant geographic diversity – ranging from the coastal setting through to highland regions – with its diverse agricultural zones vulnerable to changing climate.
In 2015, frost and drought events in PNG highlighted the impact that significant weather events can have on local agricultural and food production. The Climate Change Institute of the Australian National University, in partnership with the Papua New Guinea National Agricultural Research Institute (NARI), is leading an inter-disciplinary project which will support the development of localised climate information services in PNG.
In October, Sustineo joined other project partners in delivering social research survey-based training using tablet technology with staff from NARI. Working with staff from Lae (Morobe province) and Goroka (Eastern Highlands), the team is preparing to undertake a baseline survey to understand how information about weather currently flows through different agricultural communities and how that informs farm decision making. With training completed, we expect the data collection teams to be in the field in the coming weeks.
With the project due to run into 2020 and potentially beyond, we are looking forward to continuing to build on the great work completed in this initial trip with colleagues from NARI, the ANU, our PNG in-country partner, Anglo Pacific Research, and technology partner, Akvo.
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