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Potential impacts of climate change on agricultural land use suitability of the Hungarian counties


Central and Eastern European countries are a hotspot area when analyzing the impacts of climate change on agricultural and environmental sectors. This paper conducts a socio-economic evaluation of climate risks on crop production in Hungary, using panel data models. The region has a special location in the Carpathian basin, where the spatial distribution of precipitation varies highly from humid conditions in the western part to semiarid conditions in eastern Hungary. Under current conditions, crop systems are mainly rainfed, and water licences are massively underexploited. However, water stress projected by climate change scenarios could completely change this situation. In the near future (2021–2050), most of the crops examined could have better climatic conditions, while at the end of the century (2071–2100), lower yields are expected. Adaptation strategies must be based on an integrated evaluation which links economic and climatic aspects, and since the results show important differences in the case of individual systems, it is clear that the response has to be crop and region specific.

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Many thanks to Bojtárné Lukácsik Mónika for providing data of the Research Institute of Agricultural Economics.

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Correspondence to Sonia Quiroga.

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Gaál, M., Quiroga, S. & Fernandez-Haddad, Z. Potential impacts of climate change on agricultural land use suitability of the Hungarian counties. Reg Environ Change 14, 597–610 (2014).

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  • Climate change
  • Statistical models of yield response
  • Panel data analysis
  • Potential irrigation
  • Hungarian counties