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Climate Change and its Effect on Agriculture, Water Resources and Human Health Sectors in Poland

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Type: Journal Article
Author: Szwed, M.; Karg, G.; Pinskwar, I.; Radziejewski, M.; Graczyk, D.; Kedziora, A.; Kundzewicz, Z. W.
Journal: Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences
Volume: 10
Page(s): 1725–1737
Date: 2010
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/6430
Sector: General & Multiple Resources
Region: Europe
Subject(s): climate change
water management
Abstract: "Multi-model ensemble climate projections in the ENSEMBLES Project of the EU allowed the authors to quantify selected extreme-weather indices for Poland, of importance to climate impacts on systems and sectors. Among indices were: number of days in a year with high value of the heat index; with high maximum and minimum temperatures; length of vegetation period; and number of consecutive dry days. Agricultural, hydrological, and human health indices were applied to evaluate the changing risk of weather extremes in Poland in three sectors. To achieve this, model-based simulations were compared for two time horizons, a century apart, i.e., 1961–1990 and 2061–2090. Climate changes, and in particular increases in temperature and changes in rainfall, have strong impacts on agriculture via weather extremes – droughts and heat waves. The crop yield depends particularly on water availability in the plant development phase. To estimate the changes in present and future yield of two crops important for Polish agriculture i.e., potatoes and wheat, some simple empirical models were used. For these crops, decrease of yield is projected for most of the country, with national means of yield change being: −2.175 t/ha for potatoes and –0.539 t/ha for wheat. Already now, in most of Poland, evapotranspiration exceeds precipitation during summer, hence the water storage (in surface water bodies, soil and ground) decreases."

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