Ecosystem-based Adaptation to Drought among Agro-pastoral Farmers: Opportunities and Constraints in Nakasongola District, Central Uganda

David Mfitumukiza, Bernard Barasa, Ntale Emmanuel

Abstract


Understanding the context and importance of ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA) by agro-pastoralists is important for building climate resilient social and ecological systems amidst the changing climate. A cross-sectional survey was conducted to examine the EbA to drought by the smallholder farmers in Nakasongola District where a total of 100 respondents were randomly selected and subjected to interviews. To supplement on this information, a land use/cover spatial dataset of 2016 for Uganda was obtained and analysed to characterise and quantify the distribution of ecosystems utilised by the agro-pastoralists in the District. The spatial results revealed that the grassland (1524.6sq.km) and agricultural (agroecosystem) (779.1sq.km) ecosystems were the largest ecosystems followed by the forest/woodland and freshwater ecosystems in terms of coverage. The farmers perceived severe droughts to occur between December to January for the last 30 years with an average of 4 years return period. The agro and grassland ecosystems were the main contributors of drought adaptation opportunities compared to the freshwater and forest/woodland ecosystems. The direct and indirect opportunities involved goods and services such as water provision, mulching materials, food provision, fuelwood, regulation of air quality and water flow. However, the major constraints to EbA included rampant deforestation, limited knowledge on ecosystem conservation and overgrazing. Thus increasing water supplies for domestic and agricultural production is more likely increase the farmer’s adaptation to drought.


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/emsd.v6i2.11132

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Copyright (c) 2017 David Mfitumukiza, Bernard Barasa, Ntale Emmanuel

Environmental Management and Sustainable Development  ISSN 2164-7682

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