By Abrar Chaudhury and Chase Sova
On any given Wednesday afternoon, on the hot and dusty road connecting Orbili Village to Lawra, a small bustling district city in upper west region of Ghana, there is an unusual commotion.
Trucks, buses, and motorcycles periodically speed past the roadside shops of Orbili, greeting residents with a customary honk and a wave. As the dust slowly settles, a trickle of slow moving bicycles appear trailing the convoy. Their speeds and cargo capacities may be different, but they are all transporting the same goods – livestock purchased 20km up the road from the border towns of neighboring Burkina Faso for onward sale in markets of wealthier metropolises in South of Ghana.
So what is the rational and economics behind this weekly movement? As any finance professional would be proud to explain, two fundamental financial principles are at play here - diversification and arbitrage. Read more »
by Alexa Jay and James Hansen
Our research theme, Adaptation through managing climate risk, is leading efforts to build the resilience of agriculture and food systems to a variable and changing climate. From the field level to government policy, efforts to reduce the impacts of climate risk on food security depend increasingly on information and knowledge. Improving climate-related information and connecting it to those who need it is a vital part of our work.
In an increasingly uncertain climate, climate information and advisory services can help farmers better manage risk and take advantage of favorable climate conditions. Climate services are receiving increasing attention among development organizations as a way to support climate change adaptation and immediate development goals. Read more »
by Vanessa Meadu and Cecilia Schubert
Knowledge is power when it comes fighting hunger, food insecurity and climate injustice. This is one of the core premises at the Hunger, Nutrition, Climate Justice conference which kicks off today in Dublin, Ireland. As one of the conference co-organisers, the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) wants to showcase how scientific and indigenous knowledge are being mobilised for positive change.
In Senegal, CCAFS and partners including the Senegalese National Meteorological Agency, the Agriculture Extension Service, and many farmers groups, have developed an innovative and exciting approach to reduce the risks that farmers face as the climate becomes more and more variable: put climate information into farmers hands. Farmers have been involved in every step of the way, helping meteorologists and other specialists package and communicate the information in a way that is truly useful.
Blog story: Putting climate forecasts into farmers' hands, 25 July 2011
Blog story: Following up on last year’s climate forecast workshop – what happened next? 27 February 2012
The CCAFS team is reporting live from the Hunger, Nutrition, Climate Justice conference in Dublin from 15-16 April 2013. Watch live webcasts at www.eu2013.ie and follow updates on the CCAFS blog. Engage with us on twitter @cgiarclimate using #HNCJ.
In a joint effort, International Food Policy and Research Institute (IFPRI) and the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS), have developed the West African Agriculture and Climate Change monographs. It is the first of three monographs on climate change and agriculture, featuring West, Central, and Eastern Africa. The monographs result from a research project headed by IFPRI Senior Researcher Gerald Nelson.
by Gerald Nelson
Policy decisions are usually made in a messy process that includes incomplete information and often conflicting desires and goals of different interest groups.
Policy researchers, like me, want to improve the quality and accessibility of the information that feeds into this process. We hope that more and better information will help all parties understand the consequences of the choices being considered.
By Alexa Jay
We know that smallholder farmers in the developing world are particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate fluctuations and weather extremes. In the face of a more uncertain climate, effective climate information and advisory services have great potential to help farmers make decisions regarding their farms. Climate information also offer potential to improve the management of climate-related risk within an agricultural context and help farmers adapt to change.
Climate services for agriculture and other sectors are receiving increasing attention globally. As a sponsoring partner of the Climate Services Partnership (CSP), our research theme Adapting through managing climate risk is playing a key role in making climate information services work better for smallholder farmers.
by Yemi Ademiluyi
I tagged along with Jessica Thorn when she went out into the field in search of dry season farms. Jessica, a researcher from Oxford University, is working on mapping project sites in Lawra-Jirapa in Northern Ghana as part of the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS).
In the field Jess is using a combination of quantitative ecological field-testing techniques with qualitative sociological methods. These surveys are used to assess the relationship between ecosystem processes, goods, services and human well being in a changing climate. Read more »
By Alison Nihart
With agriculture accounting for 10-12% of global human-induced greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, sustainable agricultural development programs are looking to incorporate emissions reduction strategies into project design.
A new CCAFS working paper, Smallholder agricultural carbon projects in Ghana: Benefits, barriers, and institutional arrangements by Jean Lee, profiles four such agricultural carbon projects.
by Abdoulaye Moussa, West Africa
West Africa is one of the most affected regions by climate change due to its dependency on rain-fed agriculture. Agriculture is a mainstay for most countries and a potential way out of poverty for millions of small-scale farmers. Policies and strategies therefore need to effectively address climate change adaptation within the agriculture sector, so as to achieve the millennium development goals and promote sufficient food for all. Read more »
By Fatimata Kane and Arame Tall
“Before, our rainy seasons were longer. We were able to predict weather and seasonal changes by observing animal behavior in their natural habitats,” Paul Thiaw, a local Senegalese farmer, told researchers at a recent workshop on climate services. “With habitat loss and biodiversity decline, we have simply lost some valuable climate pattern indicators,” he stressed while adding, “this is where we can benefit from climate service expertise.”
Farmers are constantly facing new environmental challenges, which are threatening food production in some of the poorest regions of the world. One way to reduce vulnerability is through implementing and working with climate services that are relevant for smallholder farmers. Read more »
by Alexa Jay
In an increasingly uncertain climate, farmers’ traditional knowledge of when to sow and harvest, and when to expect rains, may no longer be enough. Supporting farmers with weather and climate information services for agricultural decision-making is a key strategy for enhancing food security in already vulnerable areas. Existing initiatives have shown that they can in fact reach farmers and provide a valuable service, but the challenge of broadening the impact of climate services in vulnerable communities remains.
In the light of this, the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) Theme 2, “Adapting through managing climate risk,” hosted a workshop on “Scaling Up Climate Services for Farmers in Africa and South Asia” in mid-December in Senegal, to create ways forward for broadening the impact of climate services and making them work for smallholder farmers.
This was done in a collaborative effort partnering up with United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the Climate Services Partnership (CSP), and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).
What is happening in the field? Read more »
CCAFS Coordinating Unit - University of Copenhagen, Faculty of Science, Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, Rolighedsvej 21, DK-1958 Frederiksberg C, Denmark, phone +45 35331046; Email ccafs [at] cgiar [dot] org, EAN 5790000279012
Lead Center - International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT)