The gradual rise in temperature and more droughts and heatwaves caused by climate change will have an impact on crop yield. Taking a specific consideration of the effect of temperature on crop durations, that is, the length of time between planting and harvesting, higher temperatures mean shorter durations and hence less time to accumulate biomass and yield. Through a range of data on farming, regulatory policy, markets and technologies, an average, best and worst case scenarios for current crop breeding systems have been developed by researchers.
It has been discovered that crop duration will become significantly shorter by 2018. The research team, comprising experts in agriculture, climate and social science, looked at the options for ensuring that crops can be developed and delivered to the field more quickly.
According to Professor Challinor, the Lead author of the Study at the University of Leed, “The challenge here is in knowing what future emissions will be and ensuring that climate models can produce accurate enough information on future temperatures based on those emissions. At the Priestley Centre, researchers are working on these challenges by improving climate models and targeting their use directly at solving such problems.”