Sustainability Science

, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp 103–111 | Cite as

Changing the planting date as a climate change adaptation strategy for rice production in Kurunegala district, Sri Lanka

  • W. R. S. S. Dharmarathna
  • Srikantha Herath
  • S. B. Weerakoon
Technical Report


The effect of changing the planting date on the dry season rice yield was simulated by using the software Decision Support System for Agrotechnology Transfer (DSSAT 4.5) for four rice varieties grown in Kurunegala district, Sri Lanka under expected climate change. Daily weather data up to the year 2090 were downscaled to the district from Global Climate Model outputs under the emission scenarios A2 and B2 published by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change using the Statistical Downscaling Model (SDSM 4.2). The DSSAT model was applied to simulate future rice yields from four rice varieties grown in the district under three different planting dates: (1) planting in May—the base condition; (2) advancing the planting date by 1 month, i.e., to June; and (3) planting 1 month earlier, i.e., in April. Results show that the seasonally averaged dry season rice yield would increase compared to the base condition when the planting date is advanced by 1 month and, on the other hand, the seasonally averaged rice yield would decrease compared to the base condition when the planting date is delayed by 1 month for all four varieties under both A2 and B2 scenarios. Advancing the rice planting date by 1 month for all four rice varieties can be identified as a non-cost climate change adaptation strategy for rice production in Kurunegala district.


Rice yield DSSAT Planting date Climate change adaptation SDSM 



This study was supported by the Mitsui Fund of UN-CECAR programme of United Nations University—Institute for Sustainability and Peace, Tokyo, Japan.


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Copyright information

© Springer Japan 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • W. R. S. S. Dharmarathna
    • 1
  • Srikantha Herath
    • 2
  • S. B. Weerakoon
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Civil Engineering, Faculty of EngineeringUniversity of PeradeniyaPeradeniyaSri Lanka
  2. 2.Institute for Sustainability and PeaceUnited Nations UniversityTokyoJapan

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