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Regional Climate Change and Drainage Systems: Effects on Corn Productivity and Profitability in Campinas, Brazil

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Transactions of the ASABE. 59(6): 1783-1790. (doi: 10.13031/trans.59.11588) @2016
Authors:   Nicole Costa Resende, Jarbas H. Miranda, Sin Chan Chou, Richard A Cooke
Keywords:   Climate change, Corn productivity, Drainage system, Eta model, SISDRENA model.

Abstract. Many natural systems are being affected by regional climate change. Regional climate change may affect the profitability and productivity of corn, which may require changes in the optimum design of drainage systems in the future. Our aim is to determine the effects of regional climate change on the relationship between drain spacing, corn productivity, and profitability and to derive estimates of productivity and profitability until the year 2100 using different future scenarios of climate simulation (CNTRL, HIGH, LOW, and MIDI). Our goal is to optimize drainage system designs that account for changes in climate using different drain spacing and types of soil in Campinas, Brazil. This study also evaluates the performance of the Eta regional climate model to simulate precipitation and air temperature for the study area. Evapotranspiration calculated with the Thornthwaite method (using observed and simulated data) and precipitation data were used as input for the SISDRENA model, which evaluates the performance of one-dimensional drainage systems. As output, the SISDRENA model provides information about drainage system design and indexes of water stress, productivity, and profitability. The general conclusion is that the Eta model is a good tool for studying the effects of climate change in the region because the simulations approximated the observed data. All sets of analyzed years indicated that a spacing of 20 m between drains was best, producing the highest average productivity and profitability. Clay loam soils tended to have higher productivity and profitability than clay soils, which translates to greater profit for the producer. However, the temperature and precipitation variations predicted by the Eta model showed that corn profitability may be reduced, changing the potential productivity in Campinas, Brazil.

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