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Supporting farmers facing drought: lessons from a climate service in Jamaica

Furlow, John; Buizer, James; Mason, Simon J.; Brown, Glenroy

In 2014, Jamaica entered one of the worst droughts in past 40 years. The drought was associated with the El Niño of 2014-15. Losses to agriculture and to farmers’ livelihoods were substantial, but not all farmers suffered equally. This chapter describes a seasonal drought forecast service that was developed by the Jamaican Meteorological Service (JMS) and the Rural and Agricultural Development Agency (RADA) to help farmers anticipate and prepare for drought. The service, which integrated new technical scientific information, interactive farmers’ forums, and various ways of communicating the information, grew directly out of Jamaica’s stakeholder-driven climate policy process. Jamaica’s success offers a useful example for how high-level planning, such as National Adaptation Plan processes and Nationally Determined Contributions can trigger actions that offer tangible benefits to vulnerable actors critical to sustaining key components of a country’s economy.

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Also Published In

Resilience: The Science of Adaptation to Climate Change

More About This Work

Academic Units
International Research Institute for Climate and Society
Published Here
March 17, 2020