The study determined adaptation strategies to climate variability sued by farming households in Delta State. To guide the study, four specific purposes, research question and null hypotheses respectively were developed. The survey design was adopted for the study. The population of the study consisted of all farming households in Delta State. Date for the study were collected randomly from a total of 120 respondents. A researcher developed instrument named Adaptation Strategies to Climate Variability Used by Farming Households in Delta State Questionnaire (ASCVUFHDSQ) was used to generate data for the study. Descriptive statistical tools such as frequency counts, percentages, means score and ranks. The mean was used to analysed the data obtained. The findings of the study revealed that there is a significant relationship between the respondents knowledge about climate variability and utilization of adaptation strategies. That a significant difference exists between the males’ level of utilization of climate variability adaptation strategies and the females’ level of utilization of climate variability adaptation strategies.The validity and reliability of survey instrument are subjected to face the validity by the researcher’s supervisor and other experts from the department. It was subjected to a test-retest reliability test. To accept the instrument as reliable, it had a co-efficient of reliability above 0.78 The study concluded with the recommendation that the implementation of national policy on family size should be reinvigorated government climate agencies should create awareness and usefulness of science-based equipment as a source of information. It is also recommended that climate variability component be introduced into the tree planting campaign currently implemented in Nigeria.
1.1 Background of the Study:
Agriculture is one of the most important sector of the Nigerian economy which accounts for about 42% of Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and over 70% of non-oil exports. It provides over 80% of the food needs of the country. About 70% of Nigerians live in rural area, and 90% of these are engaged in agriculture. This implies that agriculture is a key sector that stands to affect majority of Nigerians positively (Okolo, 2004). Despite its high contribution to the overall economy, this sector has been seriously facing challenges of many factors of which climate-related disasters such as drought and floods are the major ones (Deressa, 2008). According to Udofia (2001), the frightening effects of climate variability on the entire environment has reached a global dimension. Although its effects and the ecological and economic consequences are well perceived, they appear not to have been given the serious attention they deserve.
Climate is defined as the statistical description interms of mean and variability of relevant quantities over a period ranging from months to thousands or millions of years. The classical period is 30yrs as defined by the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO, 1992).These quantities are most often surface variables such as temperature, precipitation, and wind. The difference between climate and weather is that climate is what you expect while weather is what you get. The term climate variability denotes the natural characteristics of climate that manifests itself within the changes of climate with regards to time. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (2001) defines climate variability as “variations in the mean state and other statistics (such as standard deviations, the occurrence of extremes, etc.) of the climate on all temporal and spatial scales beyond that ofindividual weather events”. This definition allows the consideration of climate change as a low frequency component of climate variability that can be managed using the same quantitative tools and research approaches (Mertz and Stone, 2003). Climate variation can enhance or diminish a local area’s comparative advantage in agriculture.