THE ROLE OF FARMERS SOCIAL NETWORKS AND RURAL RADIO IN CLIMATE CHANGE ADAPTATION IN OWERRI WEST AREA OF IMO STATE, NIGERIA (Review Completed - Accepted)
The study was aimed at analyzing and ascertaining the role of farmers social networks and rural radio in climate change adaptation in Owerri West Area of Imo-State. The specific objectives were to (a) describe the socio-economic characteristics of the respondent farmers in the study area, (b) ascertain farmers awareness of climate change, (c) describe the effects of climate change on agricultural activities of the respondents, (d) identify the various social networks in the study area and (e) identify roles of various social networks and radio in farmers adaptation to climate change. A simple random sampling method was used to select one hundred and twenty (120) farmers for the study. Frequency distribution percentages and mean were used in the analysis of data collected. Results of the study showed that majority of the respondents (76.7%) were males with a mean age of 53years. Results indicate that all the respondents were very much aware of climate change. Farmers also ascertain high rainfall, flooding, decrease in crop yield, erosion, storage losses and hot temperature (hot heat) as their observation due to effects of climate change. Social networks include cooperatives, age grades, town unions and religious groups etc. Some recommendations include: (a) Education of farmers about climate change and their modern adaptation measures which could be achieved by organizing seminars, conferences and programmes on climate change regular for them. (b) Government should link and collaborate with the farmers organization (social networks), research institutions and meteorological centres that will help in order to access information, design appropriate and affordable adaptation measures to climate change.