by Vanessa Meadu
In Sri Lanka, where climate change is expected to contribute to rising temperatures and changes in the quantity and distribution of rainfall, there are serious concerns about the impacts on farming. This extends to the livelihoods of smallholder farmers who rely on the land for income, and also the food security of Sri Lankans who rely on key crops for food.
The International Water Management Institute (IWMI), which has been working in partnership with Sri Lankan government agencies in 2009, has made a significant contribution to the development of Sri Lanka’s climate change adaptation policies. Read more »
by Emily Boone
A new focus issue of the journal Environmental Research Letters explores the current state and near-term potential for improved quantification of agricultural greenhouse gases. Together the articles in this issue provide a vision for an improved system for quantifying greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in agriculture, with special attention to the needs of smallholder agriculture in developing countries.
The world’s population is growing rapidly: an estimated eight billion people by 2030, nine billion by 2050. Feeding the world sustainably requires balancing a growing population’s food and nutritional needs while limiting the greenhouse gases released by agriculture—a growing contributor to climate change. We cannot make informed decisions to achieve this balance without accurate data on agricultural greenhouse gas emissions at the local, national and international level. Read more »
The New York Times has published a piece by Bruce Campbell, on the failure of the UN Climate Talks to properly address issues of agriculture and food security. Bruce, who is director of the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) writes:
Another round of international negotiations on climate change wrapped up in Doha, Qatar, last week without a major consensus on emissions. [...] Strikingly, though, there was a lack of consensus on addressing agricultural adaptation. Efforts to implement a formal program that addresses the dire problem of food security ended without agreement and the issue was punted to June for additional discussion.
But outside of diplomatic circles, a different consensus is forming — one that does not rely on negotiations. People are noticing that climate change has already taken hold. [...] Many governments are not waiting for an international consensus before taking action.
Countries are already taking action by implementing large scale initiatives that help farmers in a changing climate. CCAFS presented these solutions in Doha, along with a report detailing each of the case studies.
Read the full story: The Farming Forecast Calls for Change - New York Times, December 12 2012
by Bruce Campbell
Despite many practical innovations, progress on getting agriculture into the official climate change negotiations has been excruciatingly slow, much slower than the urgent need to achieve food security.
The UN Climate talks currently ongoing in Doha raise the question of how to achieve food security in the drylands, where droughts are frequent and environmental and soil degradation is widespread. Farmers in these areas already face enormous challenges. Climate change will only compound these problems, bringing new levels of uncertainty and risk.
If dryland countries are serious about dealing with reducing their vulnerability to climate change, as well as reducing greenhouse gas emissions, then they need to look at how food is grown, distributed and consumed. The good news is many of the solutions for improving agriculture in the dry areas have been tried and tested. What's missing is political will and funding to scale up.
Download the report: Strategies for Combating Climate Change in Drylands Agriculture
By Jack Durrell
Shifting climate patterns are having their most acute effect on people living in the world’s dry areas. These rural communities are largely dependent on agriculture, so improving agricultural research and practices are the primary protection from climate related problems, according to a new report released today.
An international partnership – CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) with the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA), the CGIAR Research Programs on Dryland Systems and the Qatar National Food Security Program – is pressing for agricultural research to become a strategic priority of the UN’s efforts on climate change.
The case will also be made at Agriculture, Landscapes, and Livelihoods Day 5, a forum for the natural resource and agriculture community to share solutions for climate change adaptation and mitigation. Read more »
by Simon Bager
Climate change has and will have an enormous impact on what we can grow and eat. Conversely, the global food system—from production, to transportation and refrigeration to disposal—is responsible for up to 29% of human-generated greenhouse gases. With so much information about climate change available, it’s difficult to know what the key facts are. To make up for this, we’ve scoured the literature for the latest research to identify the best and most current scientific knowledge at the intersection of agriculture, climate change and food security.
The result is “Big Facts”, a set of need-to-know facts that represents the latest and most authoritative research on topics ranging from undernourishment and dietary changes to agricultural mitigation practices and climate finance. 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)