AbstractRising ambient air temperatures, migration, and deforestation threaten the sustainability of hillside agriculture in Atlántida, Honduras. Currently, farmers avoid climatic constraints to common bean production by planting at different altitudes during different seasons. However, this practice may become less effective because of climatic change. The analysis of historical weather data from 14 weather stations indicates that Honduras is undergoing climatic warming and GIS analysis shows a significant proportion of bean production under high temperature stress conditions. Farmers in ten villages in Atlántida, five at a lower altitude and five at a higher altitude, were interviewed in regard to their knowledge and experience with climatic change and bean production. Differences in bean production and yield between the low altitude and high altitude villages were attributed mainly to climatic constraints, due to differences in elevation. Under base scenario assumptions, a cost/benefit analysis indicates that the development and introduction of heat-tolerant bean varieties could produce significant returns and help to alleviate heat-related constraints on bean production.
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