Perception Survey on “Level of Knowledge and Awareness on Climate Change and itsImpact on Agriculture and Water Resources

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Save Cambodia’s Wildlife (SCW) conducted a baseline study in Tuek Krahorm commune, Choam Khsant district, Preah Vihear province and in Bos Leave commune, Chitrborei district, Kratie province. In the field survey, there were 108 respondents (62 percent females) from 6 villages in Teuk Krahorm commune and 109 respondents (50.46 percent females) from 8 villages in Bos Leave commune were interviewed.

The purpose of the survey is to access the level of awareness and knowledge of local villagers on climate change and its impacts on agriculture and water resources management as well as adaptation practices in the target communes. In addition, provincial officers of NAPA Follow Up project and commune councilors were also accessed their knowledge on climate change awareness. The key findings of the study are most respondents have observed changes in climate. However, they are not aware much of its causes and effects. Over 50 percent of respondents in Tuek Krahorm commune and approximately 30 percent of respondent in Bos Leave commune do not know at all about the various causes which contribute to climate change.

Approximately 50 percent of respondent in Teuk Krahorm commune and over 50 percent in Bos Leave commune are aware of deforestation as a cause of climate change, but they do not know much about various causes from different sectors which emit greenhouse gases into atmosphere. Approximately 50 percent of respondents in Teuk Krahorm commune and over 70 percent in Bos Leave commune know climate change affect their agricultural yields. Nearly 30 percent of respondents in Teuk Krahorm and over 30 percent in Bos Leave commune know that water resources have been affected by climate change.

Women in the target communes are the most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change such as droughts and floods. Normally, women have multiple roles in their families especially doing housework in particularly collecting water and taking part in agricultural activities. In dry season, women have to collect water from long distance and face with shortage and bad quality of water during flood season for domestic use in the families. Respondents think that non‐governmental organizations (NGOs) are responsible for helping their community to cope with climate change rather than commune councilors and
the government. It means that people are relying more on NGOs, but they are less aware the usefulness of their participation in integrating their demands related to climate change issues to the commune investment plans.

The majority of respondents are farmers and they are planting paddy and other supplemental crops to support their daily livelihoods. Their crops especially paddy has been impacted by climate change, which is resulted in low yields, and increased insects. Farmers are not aware of how to select resilient crop varieties current weather conditions. Almost all respondents are rearing animals including cattle and buffalo as their main power in agriculture as well as pigs, chicken, ducks and fish as part of their extra income generation. Animals have also been impacted by changes in temperature, which made them sick, reduced food stock, no shelters and died. People in Teuk Krahorm commune are rearing their animals with traditional ways rather than adaptive methods to climate change impacts.

Respondents in the target communes access to water for domestic use and agriculture from rivers, wells, pumping wells, digging ponds, natural ponds, streams and private distributor in Bos Leave commune. The majority of them are aware of climate change impacts on water resources such as water dried up and depleted. Most of respondent in the target commune are aware of the impacts on the forest in their commune as it could make trees dried and possible fire. 89 percent of respondents in Teuk Krahorm and 70 percent of respondents in Bos Leave commune know that the forest can
help in absorbing rain, reduce heat and protect them from wind storm. Most respondents are able to fish in water sources in their commune. Some respondents are aware of the CC decreases fish stock by increasing water temperature, drying up water, contaminating water quality. It was noticed during the field study that illegal fishing are often taken place in the target communes. Not so many respondents realize the ways to maintain fish for their food through reducing illegal fishing and keeping water availability. Over 35 percent of respondents in Teuk Krahorm commune and over 97 percent of
respondents in Bos Leave commune received information mostly before climate hazards occur via radio, TV and village meeting with local authorities and local NGOs. Respondents have considered local authority and local NGOs as information agencies that can provide sufficient information related to climate change.

Although respondents have information receiving tools such as radios, televisions, VCD players and phones, most of them are still not able to access to climate change information for their commune. Radios, TVs and meetings in their villages are effective and trusted tools to get information on climate change. Respondents in the target communes like watching TV and listening to radio in particular news programme in the morning and night time. The Bayon TV and radio channel is accessible to local people. Over 50 percent of respondents in the target communes never read any reading materials
while approximately one third of them have low education. Therefore, reading materials with more pictures such as posters are more appropriate. Provincial stakeholders still have limited understanding and knowledge on climate change in particular causes and effects, mitigation measure and adaptation practices in agriculture and water resources management. Moreover, they are not clear the difference between climate change and disasters, disaster management, monitoring and evaluation.

Resource Type: 
Surveys