Adverse weather may threaten wheat yields in Europe
A group of international researchers, including Rothamsted Research scientists, used climate scenarios based on the most up-to-date climate projections to predict the frequency and severity of weather extremes affecting wheat production across Europe in the next 50 years.
The researchers found that probability of more than one of extreme events occuring during a wheat cultivation season is likely to increase. The severity of their effect on wheat yield depends on the type of the cultivar.
For instance late cultivars that undergo flowering and maturity later in the year are at high risk of being affected both by heat and drought stress. On the basis of these predictions the consequences of possible adaptation strategies (e.g. switching form late cultivars to early and others) are explored. The study is published in the journal Nature Climate Change.
Europe has the largest wheat production in the world and it represents 25% of the global wheat area.
In Europe there is high diversity of environmental zones and wheat-producing regions will be affected differently by the extreme climatic events according to the predictions of the present study.
This suggests that adaptation strategies should be considered region-by-region within Europe.
Dr Mikhail Semenov, of Rothamsted Research and one of the lead scientists of the study said: “This is the first time, to our knowledge, that a study has considered multiple stresses on wheat under climate change. Despite large uncertainty in CMIP5 climate projections, modelling predicts an increase in probability of adverse weather events, which may affect wheat production across Europe. Adaptation strategies will be region specific: whereas in some regions, it is important to breed cultivars tolerant to heat stress, in other regions, adaptation should focus on water logging, lodging or field accessibility.”
Professor Martin Parry, leading the 2020 Wheat® programme of research strategically supported by the BBSRC said: “The results of this study are of great significance for food security in the future. Successful cultivation of high quality high yielding wheat depends on many parameters. In order to adopt appropriate strategies currently and focus on research that will provide solutions in the future we must develop accurate model predictions that account for most of these parameters. This has been achieved in this study.”
No comments posted yet. Be the first to post a comment
Please enter your name
Please enter your comment
Your comment submitted successfully.Please wait for admin approval.
Some error on your process.Please try one more time.
GM crops are good for the economy and can reduce the amount of pesticides u...
Demand from smaller European markets has helped drive strong growth for UK ...
A lack of engineers, not enough people promoting the land-based industries ...
Environment Secretary Elizabeth Truss is launching the National Pollinator ...
Agricultural specialists have welcomed a potential financial boost for youn...
As retailers continue to participate in a highly competitive race to the bo...
New farm business income data from Defra, which focus on income from March ...
Agriculture has remained one of the industries in which workers are most li...
Prime arable land in the UK has seen a substantial year-on-year growth in p...