Godson Ibeji CC, Chikaire JU, Anaeto FC, Oparaojiaku JO
The study examined the capability of extension staffs of Imo ADP (Agricultural Development Programme) in helping rural farmers adapt/mitigate to climate change variability in agriculture. The specific objectives were to identify extension capability indicators of the staff; ascertain climate change awareness of the staff; examine the adaptation strategies promoted by extension staff; and identify perceived climate change capability competence of extension staff. One hundred and twenty extension staff of the Imo ADP was purposively selected and questionnaire administered to them. Percentage and mean were used to analyse the data. The findings reveal that the Imo ADP had more middle level personnel and few Subject Matter Specialists (SMS) with a low extension agent farmer ratio of 1:5947, with few bicycle and motorcycles. The staffs were aware of climate change menace through several sources with 91.7% receiving training on climate change. Extension workers promoted adaptation strategies like conservation agriculture (M=2.54), use of improved crop varieties (M=2.61), awareness campaigns (M=2.70), use of indigenous plants (M=2.81). The capability competence included having a good understanding of climate change (M=2.64), help others obtain credible climate change information (M=2.56) and ability to identify climate change impacts (M=2.63). It is recommended that more extension staff be engaged to reduce the low extension farmer ratio, train staff regularly on climate change issues to prepare them to address rural farmer climate information problems.