6 Sep 2010

Climate stressing Vanuatu's crops

10:48 am on 6 September 2010

Farmers and the government in Vanuatu have been offered help from a German programme to address signs of climate stress on their crops.

Ministry of Agriculture root crop scientist, Vincent Lebot says the German sustainable development agency, GTZ, together with the Secretariat of the Pacific Community, is planning to help Vanuatu develop more accurate ways of measuring the climate impact.

"We are not sure yet if what we are observing in the field is really the result of climate, or the human factor, I mean the loss of traditional knowledge for crop management, and maybe some loss of soil fertility as well due to the increased population growth."

Vincent Lebot says has been attending a workshop in Port Vila on how to assess the impact of climate change on agriculture and says at present the tools used measure the problem are not very accurate.

He says creating adaptation strategies such as more resilient crops to cope with extreme environmental conditions was part of the workshop's focus.