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The Effects of Climate Change on Pests and Diseases of Major Food Crops in the Asia Pacfic Region

Published by:
Publication date
Number of Pages
Type of Publication:
Focus Region:
Asia and the Pacific
Focus Topic:
Climate / Weather / Environment
Health & Diseases
Type of Risk:
Biological & environmental
Weather & Climate related
Type of Risk Managment Option:
Risk assessment
Luck J, Asaduzzaman M, Banerjee S, Bhattacharya I, Coughlan K, Debnath GC, De Boer D, Dutta S, Forbes G, Griffiths W, Hossain D, Huda S, Jagannathan R, Khan S, O’Leary G, Miah, G, Saha A, Spooner-Hart R
Asia-Pacific Network for Global Change Research

This project investigated the impact of climate change on an important disease of potato, Late Blight, in the Asia Pacific Region. Potato is increasingly grown in the Asia Pacific as a food staple and  cash crop, with India being the third largest producer in the world. Drawing on the project team’s agrometeorology and plant pathology skills, an assessment was made on (i) the climate projections for potato growing regions across India, Bangladesh and Australia (ii) the effects of climate change on potato production and (iii) the influence of climate change on potato late blight and subsequently the effects on potato yield under future climates.  One major achievement of this project was the new collaboration formed between the three countries on a significant disease issue of potato. This was the first time, crop  modellers, agrometerologists and plant pathologists combined their expertise to understand the effects of climate change on this important disease system for the three countries. Over 20 years of disease incidence data was collected from West Bengal and Bangladesh which was critical in predicting future disease incidence.  Importantly, we have developed three country policy briefs to deliver the key findings of this project to the Bangladesh and West Bengal Agriculture ministers and to  Australian Biosecurity agencies. The project team has formed a new capability to investigate the risk of pests and diseases under future climates and we would now like to extend this capability to other major crops and their pests and diseases within the Asia Pacific.