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Sci Total Environ. 2014 Aug 1;488-489:333-42. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2014.03.126. Epub 2014 May 16.

Environmental and socio-economic vulnerability of agricultural sector in Armenia.

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University of Duisburg-Essen, Campus Essen, Faculty of Biology, Applied Climatology and Landscape Ecology, Schützenbahn 70, D-45127 Essen, Germany. Electronic address:


Being a mountainous country, Armenia has undergone different kinds of natural disasters, such as droughts, floods, and storms, which have a direct influence on economy and are expected to occur more frequently in terms of climate change, raising the need to estimate economic vulnerability especially in agricultural sector. Agriculture plays a great role in national economy of Armenia, with 21% share in Gross Domestic Production (GDP). For this reason, the estimation of agricultural resources of the country, their vulnerability towards current and future climate, and assessment of economical loss of the agricultural crop production due to climate change are the main goals of the given study. Crop productivity in dependence on climatic elements - temperature, radiation, precipitation, wind field, etc. has been estimated, further on interpolating these relations for future climate conditions using climate projections in the region for the time period of 2011-2040. Data on air temperature, precipitation, relative humidity, wind speed and direction for the period of 1966-2011 have been taken from 30 stations from the measuring network of Armenian State Hydrometeorological Service. Other climatic parameters like potential and actual evapotranspiration, soil temperature and humidity, field capacity, and wilting point have been calculated with the help of an AMBAV/AMBETTI (agroclimatic) model (German Weather Service). The results showed that temperature increase accompanied with evapotranspiration increase and water availability decrease especially in low and mid-low altitudes (where the main national crop production is centralized) caused a significant shift in the phenological phases of crops, which is very important information for effective farming dates, giving an opportunity to raise efficiency of agricultural production through minimizing the yield loss due to unfavorable climatic conditions. With the help of macroeconomical analysis of the crop market, it was estimated that the economical loss of the wheat production due to even drier conditions in the future climate (2011-2040) will be more than doubled, causing essential problems in irrigation systems with sparse water resources.


Climatic and meteorological parameters; Crop management; South Caucasus; Vulnerability analysis; Water resources

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