Climate change

Extension and Advisory Services for Climate-Smart Agriculture

Climate is turning out to be a prominent issue of concern nowadays. Climate change is the changing statistical distribution of the patterns that continues over years typically decades or longer. This climate change amplifies the threats like hunger, malnutrition, diseases, and poverty, thus affecting the progress of the world. Agriculture is the most vulnerable sector affected by climate change as it is highly dependent on local climatic parameters, such as rainfall, temperature, and soil health. It is the major driver of climate change. There is a high need to prevent the agriculture sector from being a prey to this climate change. It is time for agriculture to be “climate smart” for sustainably achieving the productivity and incomes and reducing the greenhouse emissions, wherever possible and to be resilient to climate change. Climate-smart agriculture (CSA) is an integrated approach that can address several challenges interlinked with climate change. This concept now has a wide ownership among the national and international agencies, government, and civil societies with a strong focus. Though CSA has been gaining importance, its dissemination and uptake of climate-smart technologies, tools, and practices are still largely an ongoing and challenging process. The adaptation of climate-related knowledge, technologies, and practices based on regional requirements, promoting a coordinated learning by farmers, researchers, extension workers, and the wide dissemination of CSA practices, is possible through the extension to an extent. Extension and advisory services can bridge the knowledge gap by providing clarity on CSA components and its relevant issues. They also play a vital role in helping farmers to cope with the diverse impacts of climate change by creating awareness by using appropriate tools to make them aware about different adaptation and mitigation strategies. This chapter provides a detailed description of how this rural advisory services and extension systems aid in climate-smart agriculture. The novel extension approaches like the information and communication technology (ICT)-enabled extension services and climate information services help the farmers at grass root level. The promising innovative extension approaches that are required to be adopted for the changing climate are enlisted to achieve CSA.