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Oxfam launched community-based action research on agricultural adaptation to climate change in rural villages in Shaanxi Province. The picture shows staff from the Agricultural Technology Promotion Center investigating on a farm.

Climate change has greatly impacted the agricultural industry and the livelihoods of farmers. We have tried to find ways to introduce climate change adaptation measures in poor rural communities in order to fight against it. We have also continued to explore ways to reduce poverty in these communities by incorporating climate adaptation measures as well as low carbon development.

No more floods in this tea village

“In recent years, the village has seen more and more heavy rains; floods are more severe than ever. I believe climate change is the main reason why this is happening.”

Liu Juan, a long-time resident of Liugou Village in southern Shaanxi Province, recounted the flood three years ago with fear: ‘The flood submerged the entire house. Over 7,000 catties of dried tea leaves were washed away. All furniture and appliances were damaged by the flood too.’

The flood not only wrecked Liu Juan’s house, but also destroyed the village that has been producing tea leaves for generations. After the flood, Oxfam worked with a local partner organisation to implement the Post-flooding Rehabilitation Project in Liugou Village, Nanzheng County, Shaanxi Province, which subsidised the restoration of infrastructure like roads, bridges, the sewage system and water supply. Through our support, villagers have begun planting organic tea leaves, reduced the use of pesticides and chemical fertilisers, and began using bio compost to minimise their environmental impact.

Since four years ago, Liu Juan has been actively involved in restoration efforts: ‘I thank Oxfam very much for their support. They have taught me to consider agricultural development issues from the perspective of the entire village. More importantly, I realised that preventing and adapting to climate change is the best way to maintain the development of rural areas.’

Photo: Liu Zhiqiang / Shaanxi Volunteer Mothers Association for Environmental Protection