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Climate specialists set to discuss drought in farmland Fife

Climate change specialists from across the UK are headed for the Howe of Fife this month to discuss how farmers can best adapt to mitigate the effects of drought.

The free event, which takes place on Saturday 20th January, at 9.30am in The Lomond Hills Hotel at Freuchie, is aimed at people working in the agriculture sector and locals with an interest in climate change and the wider environment.

The project, led by Professor Lindsey McEwen from the University of West England will highlight how locals’ knowledge can influence novel solutions for drought management.

Dr Andrew Black, senior lecturer at the University of Dundee, said, “Many people in Scotland think flooding is more of a water problem than drought. However, the amount of water in river catchments depends not only on the climate, but also on future population growth, agricultural practices, and other uses of water, e.g. for golf course irrigation.

“We want to know about local people’s perspectives. Scientific predictions can be made using the latest theories but when we’re talking about the environment, local people often hold vital knowledge which can have great value in helping farmers, resource managers, scientists and others to plan for the future.”

The event will include a talk led by Dr Ivan Grove, a crop scientist from Harper Adams University who will report on the effects of drought on crops such as Wheat, Barley, Triticale, Durum Wheat, Quinoa, Perennial Rye Grass and Lucerne.

The DRY project – Drought Risk and You – is funded by the Natural Environment Research Council, involves nine UK research institutions including the University of Dundee, and involves seven study areas across Great Britain, spanning a range of climatic conditions and different patterns of water use.  The Fife Eden is the most northerly of these and the only one in Scotland.

Registration is free however booking in advance is required at: http://uod.ac.uk/2CGgEQN