Any change in climatic conditions affects agriculture and crop production, above all. Cereals reach their peak yields only when certain environmental conditions are combined. The stages of their life cycle depend on specific events and specific time, they cannot help but respond to violations of the usual order of things. Raising the temperature makes seeds germinate earlier, and plants grow faster – the duration of the interphase periods is reduced. At higher temperatures, grain crops do not have enough time to form a sufficient amount of biological material, which in turn can lead to a decrease in the yield.
Reliable provision of the country population with food is of strategic importance in the context of the global world financial and economic crisis. Solving the problem of food security, corn grain plays a special role as the most important and socially significant product.
Scientists are developing future climate predictions using general circulation models in which the concentration of greenhouse gases changes. Since it is impossible to know their exact future concentrations, these general circulation models are run with different potential scenarios of greenhouse gas concentrations. These scenarios are referred to as representative concentration paths (RCP).
The article presents the results of assessing the impact of climate changes on the corn productivity formation in the western forest-steppe of Ukraine. For studying the RCP6.0 scenario of possible climate changes for the period up to 2050 was used. A dynamic model of the agricultural crops productivity developed by Polevoy A.M. was used as a research apparatus.
An analysis of the agroclimatic conditions for corn growing showed that the growing season under the climatic changes conditions will take place against a background of significantly increased temperatures and reduced precipitation in the middle and at the end of the growing season. On the contrary, precipitation is expected to increase by 41% at the beginning of the growing season. The expected increase in the air temperature during the growing season can lead to a reduction in the interphase periods and the growing season in general (by 8%), which will affect the corn yield.
Calculating the indicators of the corn crops photosynthetic productivity showed that an increase in the leaf area under the climatic changes conditions will lead to a decrease in productivity. Against a background of the increased temperatures, the increase in CO2 will not be able to sufficiently compensate for the losses. Thus, according to the RCP 6.0 scenario, the corn grain yield is expected to decrease by 11%, and under the RCP 6.0 scenario + СО2 – by 2%.
Keywords: corn, climate change, crop productivity, leaf area, RCP 6.0 scenario.
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