Environment, Vol. 1, Issue 1, Dec  2017, Pages 25-42; DOI: 10.31058/j.envi.2017.11003 10.31058/j.envi.2017.11003

An Assessment of Autonomous Adaptation Practices to Climate Change in Kishapu District Tanzania

Environment, Vol. 1, Issue 1, Dec  2017, Pages 25-42.

DOI: 10.31058/j.envi.2017.11003

Magreth S. Bushesha 1* , Wilson Katunzi 2

1 Department of Geography, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, The Open University of Tanzania, Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania

2 National Food Security, Ministry of Agriculture, Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania

Received: 11 December 2017; Accepted: 25 December 2017; Published: 19 January 2018

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Local knowledge is important in successful adaptation strategies for climate change. A repertoire of varying autonomous practices for adaptation to climate change is found in the existing literature which confirms the dynamic nature of adaptation to climate change which is mainly determined by the extent of vulnerability caused by continued depletion of resources in the environment. Case specific studies are therefore important in understanding why and how people in specific spatial and temporal scales respond to climate change in a certain manner. This article assesses autonomous adaptation practices to climate variability and change in Kishapu district in Tanzania reflecting on local knowledge. A descriptive research design was adopted for the study. Questionnaires, in-depth interviews and observation were used to collect data. Thematic data analysis and descriptive statistical analysis were used to analyze such collected data. The study establishes that traditional rainwater harvesting, agro-forestry, conservation agriculture, pest control, shifting planting time, change of planting methods, changing crop varieties, changing harvesting methods, and planting crop seeds in different fields are the major autonomous adaptation practices employed to adapt to the varying and changing climate in the study area. The study suggests policy considerations on building local peoples capacity in such areas as rainwater harvesting. The study further suggests that promoting traditional medicines in pests’ control, and sharing weather forecast information should form one of the important policy agendas at national level.


Adaptation to Climate Change, Temperature Increase, Local Knowledge, Rainwater Harvest, Pest Control, Planting Methods


© 2017 by the authors. Licensee International Technology and Science Press Limited. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


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