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Le fonctionnement de la photosynthèse est un excellent indicateur de l'état sain ou stressé d'un végétal. Ici  la mesure est effectuée sur une feuille. L'appareil (Fluorimètre Walz) envoie une lumière de saturation sur les pigments photosynthétiques, et mesure en contrepartie l'énergie ré-émise par fluorescence. Plus celle-ci est importante, moins la feuille est capable d'absorber et d'utiliser l'énergie solaire, ce qui est un signe de stress.. © INRA, MAITRE Christophe

Adaptation of crops

International action Climate-CAFE - Climate Change Adaptability of cropping and Farming systems for Europe

Reduced yield and wheat seeds quality, pea sowing in fall, increased beet yields; need to adapt varieties and sowing dates… For several years, climate change slowly alters European agricultural production systems. What will the situation in 2050? 2100? Nine multidisciplinary research teams gathered around the Climate-CAFÉ project aiming at i) analyzing the effects of climate change on agricultural production and ii) ex ante assessing by modelling various types of alternative strategies in order to improve the adaptability of the cropping and farming systems to climate change, such as: (1) resistance strategies to maintain the status quo in the short term; (2) resilience strategies requiring systemic adaptation in coherency with the current agro-food chain; (3) transformation strategies of the farming system, in order to increase the adaptive capacity.

Updated on 06/22/2015
Published on 05/29/2015

Several prospective studies have shown that European agriculture will feel the effects of climate change with very different effects in different countries and geographical region. Although agriculture modestly contributes to climate change through emissions of greenhouse gases, it has mainly a reduction of this effect by capturing atmospheric CO2 for plant photosynthesis. A disturbance temperatures or rainfall can notably impact the development of plants and also the cycle of soil nutrients and affect the operation and performance of crops. The effects of climate change, however, are still poorly identified and can especially between countries (or European region) to another. It is therefore necessary to study these effects on European agricultural systems in order to identify any suitable and effective alternatives.

The aim of the Climate-CAFE project is to evaluate different adaptation strategies of agricultural systems in two IPCC scenarios in the near future (2050) and far (2100). Three broad categories of strategies were identified: (1) resistance strategies, minimizing the impact of short-term climate change with simple adjustments and easy to implement, (2) resilience, which will require a systemic adaptation cropping systems across the field or farm, (3) a drastic transformation of cropping and farming systems. The objective of its strategies is to increase the adaptability of European cropping systems. The alternatives will be built in participatory research by mobilizing 10 "adaptation pilots" (group of farmers, advisers and actors of the agricultural sector). These drivers are distributed in various European pedoclimates sweeping the wide range of agricultural situations of major European cultures, from Finland to the South of Spain (north-south gradient) and Scotland to the east of Germany ( West-East gradient).

Logo Climate-CAFE. © INRA, Climate-CAFE
Logo Climate-CAFE © INRA, Climate-CAFE

The Climate-CAFE project is organized into seven working packages (WP):

  • WP1 mobilizes, facilitates and assesses solutions to the adaptation of innovative European agricultural systems to climate change, through a participatory research approach with 10 pilot groups (adaptation pilots).
  • WP2 collects, analyzes and synthesizes data from new and old experimental culture system, to synthesize the levers and solutions which could be effective to adapt European culture systems to climate change.
  • WP3 manages the scientific coordination of the project to develop and formalize the form of scenarios adaptation strategies to climate change co-constructed in WP1 with pilot groups.
  • WP4 models and simulates the impact on the agronomic and environmental performance of adaptation strategies to climate change formalized in WP3. The compromise between "mitigation" and "adaptation" will also be evaluated through simulation particularly on greenhouse gas emissions, the budgets of C, N and water.
  • WP5 evaluates the socio-economic performance of European agricultural production systems at the farm level and an operating together on economic and environmental criteria.
  • WP6 develops new simple and accessible tools in order to help farmers and advisors to predict the impact of climate change on agricultural production and to simulate alternative scenarios.
  • WP7 manages the communication and dissemination of the Climate-CAFÉ project.

The Climate-CAFE project brings together twelve teams of multidisciplinary researchers from nine European countries to test ex ante solutions for adaptation of cropping systems and production of European climate change. This collaboration should enable both to facilitate the transmission and synthesis of knowledge between farmers and stakeholders’ pilot groups, to reach a first assessment of the effect of climate change on European production systems and identify adaptation measures the potential climate change in different agricultural contexts. The relative effectiveness of each of these adaptation strategies will be evaluated using simulations in the long term and based on a multi-criteria evaluation.

More information:

Twitter : https://twitter.com/EU_ClimateCAFE
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/climatecafeEU

See also : http://www6.inra.fr/climate-cafe

Scientific contact(s):

Associated Division(s):
Environment and Agronomy
Associated Centre(s):