Climate change and its impact on the agricultural sector in developing economies is a matter of considerable academic and political debate. This paper examines the impact of climate change and variability on Sri Lankan agriculture and identifies the potential adaptation practices and their impacts on rice productivity. More specifically, this study investigates how farming households’ decisions to adapt to climate change affects agricultural productivity in the Batticaloa district of Sri Lanka. The data were collected through a primary survey of 238 farming households. We employ a simultaneous equations model with endogenous switching to investigate the differing effects of adaptation on adapters and non-adapters. The findings show that most farmers perceive there are adverse climate change impacts on their agricultural production. We also find that farmers’ adaptation measures substantially boost rice yields. Moreover, it is shown that such strategies would benefit both adapters and non-adapters. Farmers’ access to climate related information, education, membership in farmer organizations and size of plots are found to play a key role in the adaptation process. Overall, this study provides empirical evidence of the positive impact of adaptations on food productivity and farm income, thus suggesting the need for policy interventions that enhance farmers uptake of strategies against climate change impacts.
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