Over the last 50 years mean annual temperature in Serbia had increased by 1.2°C, while summer season warmed even more, by 1.8°C. Alongside the warming, we are experiencing increased climate variability, with more frequent and severe extreme weather events such as droughts, heat waves, heavy precipitation, floods.
Climate change that we are experiencing is altering phenophases dynamics of all plants, increasing year-to year variability of yields’ quality and quantity, causing more frequent damages due to the late spring frost, hail, high temperature and insolation, droughts, pests and diseases.
Economy losses and damages due to the natural disasters in Serbia over the last 20 years are estimated at minimum 7.5 billion EUR. Of that number, more than 5 billion EUR are caused by droughts. One single drought in 2012 brought us over 2 billion EUR of losses. Heavy floods in 2014 caused loss of 1.5 billion EUR, of which 120 million EUR was damages in agricultural sector.
Meteorological and climate information, such as observation and short-term weather forecast, are commonly used in agricultural practice. However, in order to develop climate change resilient agricultural production, it is necessary to have relevant weather information months in advance. Agricultural producers do not commonly use long-term (seasonal) weather forecast in planning their practice mainly because it is not easily assessable, it has coarse spatial resolution and products are too complicated to understand and not specifically made for agriculture.
With IAPS project we hope to bridge the gap between the producers’ need to improve and protect their yields from weather-related hazards and the meteorological service’s ability to provide timely and precise information.