MAINSTREAMING CLIMATE CHANGE ADAPTATION IN AGRICULTURAL EXTENSION
SLIDE 15 – A FINAL POINT ON PROBABILITY
An important point
Remember, different people have different attitudes to risk and we should never try
to convince someone to make a particular decision. It is up to them to decide and for
us just to give them the information. For example, for some people an 8/10 chance of
winning $100 may seem good and they will pay $10. However for another person, an
8/10 chance may be too risky as they have nowhere to get another $10 if they don‟t
win! This is similar for many farmers. They take the risks with their decisions and are
affected by the results (good or bad!). Our role is to give them information and
choices but NOT to try to persuade them to choose a particular option.
Up until now in this session today we have been focusing on using information
based on long climate records. As we have said, this can help farmers to know
the probability of events and so help them know the risks in a season and then
make better decisions on things like which crop is best suited to this area given
the events and probabilities, which varieties are best suited to the rainfall and
season lengths etc....
IN ADDITION TO THIS, we can ALSO look for ways to provide farmers with
FORECASTS. These are different to and are extra to the probabilities.
International, regional and national meteorological organisations give forecasts
for what they expect the weather to be in the next few days, months or season.
These are mainly based on collections of weather information from the oceans,
atmosphere and land shortly before the forecasts and on complex models run on
computers that use this information
Ask participants the following question?
SLIDE 16 – PROVIDING FORECASTS TO FARMERS (AS WELL AS
• What information is available to farmers about the next season?
Answers may include the items in the next slide, but many extension staff are not
aware that short term e.g. ten day forecasts are available from met services
A Training Manual on Use of Climate Information and Vulnerability and Capacity Assessment for
Agricultural Extension Staff in Zimbabwe