Analyzing adaptation strategies for maize production under future climate change in Guanzhong Plain, China

Qaisar Saddique, Huanjie Cai*, Jiatun Xu, Ali Ajaz, Jianqiang He, Qiang Yu, Yunfei Wang, Hui Chen, Muhammad Imran Khan, De Li Liu, Liang He

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


Agricultural adaptation is crucial for sustainable farming amid global climate change. By harnessing projected climate data and using crop modeling techniques, the future trends of food production can be predicted and better adaptation strategies can be assessed. The main objective of this study is to analyze the maize yield response to future climate projections in the Guanzhong Plain, China, by employing multiple crop models and determining the effects of irrigation and planting date adaptations. Five crop models (APSIM, AquaCrop, DSSAT, EPIC, and STICS) were used to simulate maize (Zea mays L.) yield under projected climate conditions during the 2030s, 2050s, and 2070s, based on the combination of 17 General Circulation Models (GCMs) and two Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs 6.0 and 8.5). Simulated scenarios included elevated and constant CO2 levels under current adaptation (no change from current irrigation amount, planting date, and fertilizer rate), irrigation adaptation, planting date adaptation, and irrigation-planting date adaptations. Results from both maize-producing districts showed that current adaptation practices led to a decrease in the average yield of 19%, 27%, and 33% (relative to baseline yield) during the 2030s, 2050s, and 2070s, respectively. The future yield was projected to increase by 1.1–23.2%, 1.0–22.3%, and 2–31% under irrigation, delayed planting date, and double adaptation strategies, respectively. Adaptation strategies were found effective for increasing the future average yield. We conclude that maize yield in the Guanzhong Plain can be improved under future climate change conditions if irrigation and planting adaptation strategies are used in conjunction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1523-1543
Number of pages21
JournalMitigation and adaptation strategies for global change
Early online date29 Oct 2020
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020


  • Adaptation
  • Climate change
  • Irrigation
  • Maize yield
  • Multiple crop models
  • Planting date
  • n/a OA procedure


Dive into the research topics of 'Analyzing adaptation strategies for maize production under future climate change in Guanzhong Plain, China'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this