Farmers' Knowledge and Perceptions to Climate Variability in North West Cameroon

Roland Azibo Balgah, Jude Ndzifon Kimengsi, Bime, Mary-Juliet Wirbam, Forti, Kusamia Antonia


Global climate variability exerts negative impacts especially on agriculture-dependent economies. Contemporary climate modelling suggests that farming households in developing countries will bear the greatest brunt from climate variability. However, information on farmers’ knowledge and perceptions to climate variability and possible influence on household adaptation strategies especially in developing countries is scarce. This paper assesses farmers’ knowledge and perceptions to climate variability, based on a case study from the North Western region of Cameroon.

A structured questionnaire was used in a cross sectional survey to collect data on knowledge and perceptions to climate variability, from 272 farmers in six randomly selected villages in the North West Region of Cameroon. Data was analyzed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS version 17.0) and Excel. Over 97% of respondents demonstrated contextual knowledge of climate variability. Perceptions to the causes of climate variability were quite diverse. While 20% of respondents had no idea, around 40% attributed climate variability to human activities, 20% to industrial activities and 20% to the anger of the gods.

We conclude with the need for climate variability research to increasingly pay attention to farmers’ indigenous knowledge and perceptions as prerequisites to building resilience amongst farmers in Cameroon.

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