Agriculture and adaptation to climate change: The role of wildlife ranching in South Africa

17 February 2016
Publication Type: Working Paper
JEL Code: Q12, Q15, Q54

In this paper, we explored the role of wildlife in adaptation to climate change in areas predominantly used for livestock production in South Africa. Using a sample of 1071 wildlife and livestock farms we estimated a multinomial choice model of various adaptation options including livestock and wildlife farming choices. The results indicate that mixed livestock-wildlife farms are less vulnerable to climate change when compared to specialized livestock or wildlife farms. However, net farm revenues per hactare are higher for specialized wildlife ranches when compared to mixed wildlife-livestock ranches or livestock ranches. The results further show that temperature increase will influence most livestock farmers to change land use to wildlife ranching. At farm level, land size and social networks are also likely to play a bigger role in land use change as climate changes. Using climate models, we establish that livestock farmers in Eastern Cape Province of South Africa will be most affected by climate change and will subsequently change land use.


Working paper 579
1 February 2016