Agriculture and related land use change contribute nearly a quarter of global annual greenhouse gas emissions. About 75% of agricultural emissions originate in developing countries, and approximately 33% come from smallholder farmers. As countries aim to fulfill their international climate commitments to reduce emissions from agriculture and related land use change, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and CCAFS are partnering to identify opportunities to pursue food security that are compatible with low emissions development. CCAFS conducts country-focused analyses on the agricultural, financial, political and social feasibility of low emission agricultural practices and develops accurate, low-cost monitoring, reporting and verification methods.
The project entails:
- Analysis on the effects of low-emission agricultural practices on yields, potential climate change mitigation benefits and changes in emissions. Case studies from nine projects in nine different countries are published.
- Support select countries in ensuring that they are able to track emission reductions using monitoring, reporting and verification (MRV) standards that are evidence-based, feasible to implement, and relevant for policy goals in the agroforestry and livestock sectors.
- Assessing the ambition, feasibility and implementation options – including attracting investments - for reducing emissions from agriculture, with a focus on the high emission intensity agricultural sectors of livestock and rice.
- Refinement of the CCAFS Mitigation Option Tool (CCAFS-MOT), which estimates emissions from crops and livestock production systems in different regions and ranks the most effective mitigation options in relation to current management practices, climate and soil characteristics.
Results enable country partners, donors and other stakeholders to identify the impact of agricultural development projects on climate change and climate change mitigation and analyze opportunities to increase food security and mitigate climate change. By applying rigorous scientific standards and widely sharing its data, the project increases understanding about the range of emissions that might result from business-as-usual and low-emission agricultural practices when deployed at scale, and it improves confidence in reporting and investing in emission reductions.
Publications and outputs
Ambition and feasibility of low emissions opportunities
- CCAFS and IRRI. 2019. Low-emissions rice in Vietnam: Options, ambition, feasibility, and investments. Webinar featuring the following presentations: Introduction and way forward by Lini Wollenberg and Leo Sebastian. Rice in Vietnam emissions, NDC planning and actions, feasibility analysis of LED options by B. Ole Sander. An investment plan in support of Vietnam's nationally determined contributions to the Paris agreement from rice production in the Mekong River Delta by Tran Van The.
- CIAT. 2017. Validation of RUMINANT model towards accurate estimations of enteric methane emissions under tropical conditions to support Colombian NDC. Presentation at validation workshop, Cali, Colombia on July 26, 2017.
Ericksen PJ, Crane TA. 2018. The feasibility of low emissions development interventions for the East African livestock sector: Lessons from Kenya and Ethiopia. ILRI Research Report 46. Nairobi, Kenya: ILRI.
Kashangaki J, Ericksen P. 2018. Cost–benefit analysis of fodder production as a low emissions development strategy for the Kenyan dairy sector. ILRI Project Report. Nairobi, Kenya: ILRI.
Richards M, Bruun TB, Campbell B, Gregersen LE, Huyer S, Kuntze V, Madsen STN, Oldvig MB, Vasileiou I. 2016. How countries plan to address agricultural adaptation and mitigation: An analysis of Intended Nationally Determined Contributions. CCAFS dataset version 1.1. Copenhagen, Denmark: CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS).
Monitoring, reporting and verification (MRV)
- CCAFS. 2016. COP22 side event: Improving MRV for agricultural emission reductions in the livestock sector. Event description. Video.
- White J. 9 May 2017. Guidance for national- and activity-level reporting of greenhouse gas emissions and mitigation in the livestock sector. CCAFS Blog.
- White J. 24 January 2019. Over a third of developing countries intend to mitigate climate change through agroforestry. CCAFS Blog.
- White J. 19 February 2019. Improved accounting for agroforestry is needed immediately; may attract climate finance. ClimateLinks blog post.
- White J, Gurwick N. 2018. Improving accounting for livestock emissions and emission reductions. ClimateLinks blog post.
- Wilkes A. 2017. Monitoring, reporting and verification of greenhouse gas emissions from livestock: current practices and opportunities for improvement. CCAFS Info Note.
Wilkes A, Reisinger A, Wollenberg E, van Dijk S. 2017. Measurement, reporting and verification of livestock GHG emissions by developing countries in the UNFCCC: current practices and opportunities for improvement. CCAFS Report No. 17. Wageningen, the Netherlands: CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) and Global Research Alliance for Agricultural Greenhouse Gases (GRA).Wollenberg E. 1 December 2016. Improving reporting for agricultural emission reductions in the livestock sector. CCAFS Blog.
Food loss and waste (FLW)
- White J, Gurwick N. 2019. Building the Evidence Base on Food Loss and Waste – Young Scientists to Research Impacts on GHG Emissions. ClimateLinks blog post.
CCAFS Mitigation Options Tool (CCAFS-MOT)
- CCAFS. No date. CCAFS-MOT: a mitigation options tool for agriculture. Webpage.
Feliciano D. 2018. Using the CCAFS Mitigation Options Tool to identify mitigation co-benefits in Ethiopia’s land use sector. CCAFS Workshop Report. Wageningen, the Netherlands: CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS).
Feliciano D, MacSween K. 2018. Using the Mitigation Options Tool (CCAFS-MOT): Case studies. CCAFS Info Note. Wageningen, The Netherlands: CGIAR Research Program for Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS).
Feliciano D, Nayak D, Vetter SH, Hillier J. 2016. CCAFS Mitigation Options Tool and Guidelines.
- Feliciano D, Nayak DR, Vetter SH, Hillier J. 2017. CCAFS-MOT - A tool for farmers, extension services and policy-advisors to identify mitigation options for agriculture. Agriculture Systems 154:100-111.
- MacSween K, Feliciano D. 2018. Co-benefits of mitigation options in the CCAFS-Mitigation Options Tool (CCAFS-MOT). CCAFS Working Paper no 229. Wageningen, The Netherlands: CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS).
Quantification of the effects of low-emission agricultural practices on yields and emissions
CCAFS, in collaboration with the FAO and the University of Vermont, published a series of info notes analyzing low emissions agricultural practices in USAID development projects. The notes, published in 2016, are listed below by country and agricultural practice. Description of the methodology used follows.
- Accelerating Agriculture Productivity Improvement (AAPI) in Bangladesh, focusing on irrigated rice and soil and fertilizer management
- ACCESO in Honduras focusing on agroforestry and perennial crop expansion, livestock, and soil and fertilizer management.
- Agricultural Development and Value Chain Enhancement Activity (ADVANCE) II in Ghana focusing on irrigated rice and soil and water management.
- Better Life Alliance in Zambia focusing on agroforestry and perennial crop expansion, land use including reforestation and avoided degradation, and soil and fertilizer management.
- Chanjè Lavi Planté in Haiti focusing on agroforestry and perennial crop expansion, irrigated rice, land use including reforestation and avoided degradation, and soil and fertilizer management.
- Pastoralist Resiliency Improvement and Market Expansion (PRIME) in Ethiopia focusing on livestock.
- Peru Cacao Alliance in Peru focusing on agroforestry and perennial crop expansion, and soil and fertilizer management.
- Resilience & Economic Growth in Arid Lands - Accelerated Growth (REGAL-AG) in Kenya focusing on livestock.
- Rwanda Dairy Competitiveness Project in Rwanda focusing on livestock.
- Grewer U, Bockel L, Galford G, Gurwick N, Nash J, Pirolli G, Wollenberg E. 2016. A methodology for greenhouse gas emission and carbon sequestration assessments in agriculture. CCAFS Working Paper no. 187. Copenhagen, Denmark: CCAFS; CIAT; FAO.
Grewer U, Nash J, Gurwick N, Bockel L, Galford G, Richards M, Costa C, White J, Pirolli G, Wollenberg E. 2018. Analyzing the greenhouse gas impact potential of smallholder development actions across a global food security program. Environmental Research Letters 13(4):12-13Nash J. December 6 2016. Mitigation co-benefits of increased water and nutrient efficiency in irrigated rice in Bangladesh. CCAFS Blog. December 6.
- Nash J, Costa C, Galford G, Gurwick N, Wollenberg E. 2015. Methods for Identifying Low Emissions Development Options in Agriculture. CCAFS Working Paper no. 147. CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS). Copenhagen, Denmark.
- Nash J, Wollenberg L, Galford G, Richards M. 2016. Designing agricultural development investments to yield mitigation co-benefits in livestock and rice systems. Presentation at the USAID Feed the Future Global Learning and Evidence Exchange meeting on Climate-Smart Agriculture. December 7, Siam Reap, Cambodia,
- Wollenberg, E. April 26 2016. Reducing Emissions from Food Value Chains of Smallholders in Africa: Does the Evidence Weigh Up? AgriLinks blog
- Wollenberg E, Nash J, Richards, M. 2016. Low Emissions Development: Evidence for reducing emissions from food value chains of smallholders in Africa. Presentation at the Global Learning and Exchange Event 15 March, Lusaka Zambia.
With funding from USAID, CCAFS is working with the following partners:
- Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO),
- Gund Institute for Environment at the University of Vermont,
- International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI),
- Instituto de Manejo e Certificação Florestal e Agrícola (IMAFLORA),
- International Rice Research Institute (IRRI),
- New Zealand Agricultural Greenhouse Gas Research Centre (NZAGRC),
- Unique Forestry and Land Use,
- USDA Foreign Agricultural Service
For more information, please contact Julianna White (CCAFS) at email@example.com.