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External Food Security News

Want to save the world from hunger? Start by not wasting food, shoppers told

By Rebecca Smithers Consumer affairs correspondent from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Apr 12, 2018.

World Food Programme teams up with creative agency to encourage public to create meals from food that would otherwise go to waste

Consumers are being urged to use their imagination and create recipes from food that would otherwise go to waste, as part of a campaign to raise money to tackle global hunger.

The World Food Programme has launched a social media movement, #RecipeforDisaster, with the aim of making the public more conscious of the food waste they generate. It is hoped the initiative, which is being launched in Britain first before being rolled out globally, will encourage people to share recipes online and make a donation.

In the developed world, most food is lost on the plate. Recipe for Disaster aims to confront this issue

Related: Africa 'very, very far away' from meeting global target to end child malnutrition

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IFPRI Headquarters Move Complete

By sdarby from IFPRI Updates: News Releases RSS Feeds. Published on Apr 04, 2018.

Apr 9, 2018
Press Announcement

IFPRI Headquarters Move Complete

Dear colleagues,


We are pleased to announce that IFPRI-Washington staff will now be housed under one roof effective, April 16, 2018.  After a year of working from different buildings, the rest of the IFPRI family in Washington will now move to our…

Destruction of nature as dangerous as climate change, scientists warn

By Jonathan Watts Global environment editor from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Mar 23, 2018.

Unsustainable exploitation of the natural world threatens food and water security of billions of people, major UN-backed biodiversity study reveals

Human destruction of nature is rapidly eroding the world’s capacity to provide food, water and security to billions of people, according to the most comprehensive biodiversity study in more than a decade.

Such is the rate of decline that the risks posed by biodiversity loss should be considered on the same scale as those of climate change, noted the authors of the UN-backed report, which was released in Medellin, Colombia on Friday.

Related: What is biodiversity and why does it matter to us?

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Wheat in heat: the 'crazy idea' that could combat food insecurity

By Mark Hillsdon from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Mar 23, 2018.

Durum wheat varieties can withstand 40C heat along the Senegal River basin, and could produce 600,000 tonnes of food

In the northern Senegalese village of Ndiayene Pendao, close to the border with Mauritania, Fatouma Sow is pulling weeds. Her team of female farmers tread carefully among the tall, ripening plants as they prepare to harvest the country’s first ever crop of durum wheat.

They had grown onions and tomatoes on the one-hectare plot (2.47 acres), Sow explains, but the crops took too long to grow and disrupted the essential rice growing season. Now the wheat offers a fast-growing, lucrative alternative.

Related: Africa 'very, very far away' from meeting global target to end child malnutrition

If you can grow it here, you can grow it anywhere

Related: 'Price of conflict is too high': hunger at crisis levels in eight countries

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2018 Global Food Policy Report: Anti-Globalism Threatens Progress in Hunger, Poverty Reduction; Requires Strong Policies and Global Leadership

By saggarwal from IFPRI Updates: News Releases RSS Feeds. Published on Mar 19, 2018.

Mar 20, 2018
Press Release

2018 Global Food Policy Report: Anti-Globalism Threatens Progress in Hunger, Poverty Reduction; Requires Strong Policies and Global Leadership

Washington, D.C.: The rise of isolationism and protectionism, visible in the US withdrawal from multilateral trade and climate agreements, the UK’s “Brexit” from the EU, and growing anti-immigration rhetoric in developed countries, threatens to slow…

Africa 'very, very far away' from meeting global target to end child malnutrition

By Karen McVeigh from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Mar 01, 2018.

Research covering 51 countries in unprecedented detail suggests entire continent will miss 2030 deadline

No African country is expected to reach the UN target of ending childhood malnutrition by 2030, according to a new study.

The research, comprised of two papers published in the science journal Nature, is the first of its kind to identify local hotspots for poor child nutrition and low education levels across 51 African countries. By using maps of local health and education data, in 5x5 sq km across the whole continent, researchers identified variations at state and county level missed from previous comparisons.

Related: Nativity on a knife-edge: the struggle for survival in Somalia – in pictures

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Tewodaj Mogues selected as the Foreign Policy Interrupted Fellow 2018

By sdarby from IFPRI Updates: News Releases RSS Feeds. Published on Feb 28, 2018.

Feb 28, 2018
Press Statement

Tewodaj Mogues selected as the Foreign Policy Interrupted Fellow 2018

IFPRI's Tewodaj Mogues is among 7 women to be inducted into the Program designed to empower women & diversify foreign policy perspectives.

BOOK RELEASE: The Cocoa Coast: The Board-Managed Cocoa Sector in Ghana

By saggarwal from IFPRI Updates: News Releases RSS Feeds. Published on Feb 22, 2018.

Feb 22, 2018
Press Release

BOOK RELEASE: The Cocoa Coast: The Board-Managed Cocoa Sector in Ghana

  • New analysis on the success driving Ghana’s Board-managed cocoa sector
  • From 2000 to 2010/11 Ghana doubled cocoa production to become second largest producer in the world
  • Between 2005 and 2012, poverty incidence dropped more among cocoa-households than…

New African agricultural transformation scorecard highlights continent’s progress

By saggarwal from IFPRI Updates: News Releases RSS Feeds. Published on Feb 01, 2018.

Feb 1, 2018
Press Statement

New African agricultural transformation scorecard highlights continent’s progress

Evaluating agriculture sector progress of African countries toward achieving the seven broad commitments of the 2014 Malabo Declaration.

'Price of conflict is too high': hunger at crisis levels in eight countries

By Karen McVeigh from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Jan 30, 2018.

War driving up acute food insecurity on a vast scale, report finds, with Yemen, South Sudan and Syria worst affected

The number of hungry people living in conflict zones is rising, with eight countries recording crisis or emergency levels of food insecurity in at least a quarter of their people, food agencies warned the UN security council on Monday.

In Yemen, 17 million people, or 60% of the population, are facing acute food insecurity, while in South Sudan, the figure is 4.8 million or 45% of its people. The other countries ranked as having the highest proportions of food insecure people were Syria, Lebanon, Central African Republic, Ukraine, Afghanistan and Somalia, according to a report by the World Food Programme and the Food and Agriculture Organisation.

Related: The struggle for food in a fragile world – in pictures

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Food insecurity: a third of poorest households skip meals, survey finds

By Patrick Butler Social policy editor from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Jan 30, 2018.

Large families and jobless worst hit by rising costs and austerity, with 32% and 36% missing meals

A third of the UK’s poorest households are skipping meals because they cannot afford to put food on the table, according to a survey that highlights the extent to which austerity and rising food prices are driving “hidden hunger”.

Groups worst hit by benefit cuts and freezes, such as unemployed people and families with three or more children, were most likely to suffer food insecurity, while relatively protected groups, such as retired people, were least likely to experience such problems.

Related: UK 'sleepwalking' into food insecurity after Brexit, academics say

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Leadership, accountability, and setting priorities are key to end hunger and undernutrition

By saggarwal from IFPRI Updates: News Releases RSS Feeds. Published on Jan 29, 2018.

Jan 27, 2018
Press Statement

Leadership, accountability, and setting priorities are key to end hunger and undernutrition

Statement by Shenggen Fan
Director General, IFPRI

Sharing experiences on the fight against hunger

High-level Side Event – Renewed Partnership to End Hunger in Africa by 2025-Five Years Later

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
27 January 2018



'I used to see them as a bunch of rioters': Brazil's radical farmers | Ignacio Amigo

By Ignacio Amigo from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Jan 25, 2018.

Landless workers who occupied disused and degraded farmland were finally given plots – and have transformed them into fields of bounty through agroforestry

Photographs by Ignacio Amigo

One day in 2005 Zaqueu Miguel was driving his bus through the outskirts of the city of Ribeirão Preto, in south-east Brazil, when he noticed a group of people camped near a rural property.

He discovered that the camp was called Mario Lago, and that the people there were demanding the expropriation of the land – vacant and degraded – in order to use it for farming. Miguel, who had grown up on a farm and had dreamed ever since of having his own piece of land, didn’t think twice. He packed some basics and joined them, keeping his job and family in the city but spending nights in a shack at the camp.

Related: Battling a tide of sewage in Brazil: ‘For 17 days we lived with our feet under water’ | Ciro Barros and Iuri Barcelos

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Livestock production for food security and nutrition

By saggarwal from IFPRI Updates: News Releases RSS Feeds. Published on Jan 23, 2018.

Jan 20, 2018
Press Statement

Livestock production for food security and nutrition

Statement by Shenggen Fan Director General, IFPRI
10th Berlin Agriculture Ministers’ Conference, Berlin, Germany
20 January 2018


Distinguished Ministers and guests,

Ladies and gentlemen,

First, I would like to commend the agriculture ministers for…

‘Hunger is killing me’: starvation as a weapon of war in South Sudan | Sam Mednick

By Sam Mednick in Lainya from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Jan 10, 2018.

Civil war has ravaged once-bountiful Equatoria, now a wasteland of looted shops and abandoned homes, with close to 400,000 people desperate for food

“Food,” says John Lasona, “tortures my mind.” Hunched over, bare-chested, the 48-year-old father in Lainya town runs his fingers over his hollowed frame. “The hunger is killing me.”

Once regarded as South Sudan’s breadbasket, the ravaged Equatoria region is slipping into catastrophe, its once self-reliant citizens now dependent on handouts.

Related: South Sudan's warring parties agree ceasefire in bid to end four-year war

Related: South Sudan: 'When we came home for lunch our parents had been killed'

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Bacon without the guilt? Nitrite-free rashers to hit British supermarkets

By Press Association from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Dec 29, 2017.

Northern Irish food manufacturer Finnebrogue says its Naked Bacon contains no preservatives, E numbers or allergens

Bacon that is said to be free of nitrites, preservatives, E numbers and allergens will soon appear on supermarket shelves in what is being called “a remarkable feat of food technology”.

The Northern Irish food manufacturer Finnebrogue claims its Naked Bacon contains no nitrites – salts from chemical or natural sources added as a preservative, anti-microbial agent and colour fixative.

Related: What’s so bad about ‘processed food’?

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The year's top development stories: 2017 in review

By Lucy Lamble from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Dec 25, 2017.

As Donald Trump cut funding for family planning and people from east Africa to Yemen went hungry, peace finally gained a foothold in Colombia

The year began with the inauguration of Donald Trump and the reinstatement of the “global gag rule”, or Mexico City policy, which banned US federal funding for NGOs in countries that provide abortion services or advocacy.

Related: Portraits of South Sudanese refugees in Uganda – in pictures

Related: Iraq's killing fields: the lethal legacy of landmines – in pictures

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Book Release: Pulses for Nutrition in India: Changing Pattern from Farm to Fork

By saggarwal from IFPRI Updates: News Releases RSS Feeds. Published on Dec 22, 2017.

Dec 27, 2017
Press Release

Book Release: Pulses for Nutrition in India: Changing Pattern from Farm to Fork

December 27, 2017 – A good monsoon led to a rise in sowing and production of pulses in 2017, resulting in prices falling almost by half. Earlier, in 2015, rising prices causing declining consumption of pulses had been a cause of concern for both…

Can a GM banana solve Uganda's hunger crisis? | Alon Mwesigwa

By Alon Mwesigwa in Wakiso from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Dec 12, 2017.

A law paving the way for GM crops is aimed at tackling the acute food shortages faced by almost 11 million Ugandans, despite experts’ fears over the technology

After an afternoon drizzle, Ephraim Muhereza carefully scouts his three-acre banana plantation in Gayaza, Wakiso district, plucking male buds from trees. This will stop his plants from catching the notorious banana bacterial wilt, which has destroyed many farms in Uganda.

“We have been told that to reduce the spread of the wilt. We have to cut them so that bees that visit them don’t spread the disease,” he says.

Related: Silence far from golden for child labourers in the mines of Uganda

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Mass starvation is humanity’s fate if we keep flogging the land to death | George Monbiot

By George Monbiot from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Dec 11, 2017.

The Earth cannot accommodate our need and greed for food. We must change our diet before it’s too late

Brexit; the crushing of democracy by billionaires; the next financial crash; a rogue US president: none of them keeps me awake at night. This is not because I don’t care – I care very much. It’s only because I have a bigger question on my mind. Where is all the food going to come from?

By the middle of this century there will be two or three billion more people on Earth. Any one of the issues I am about to list could help precipitate mass starvation. And this is before you consider how they might interact.

Related: Goodbye – and good riddance – to livestock farming | George Monbiot

I am plagued by visions of starving people seeking to escape from grey wastes

Related: Animal agriculture is choking the ​Earth and making us sick. We must act now | James Cameron and Suzy Amis Cameron

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'A danger to future generations': $640m pledged as third of world malnourished

By Karen McVeigh from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Nov 04, 2017.

Kofi Annan urges greater investment to tackle soaring rates of obesity and hunger as researchers find almost every country in the world is affected

Donors have pledged an extra $640m (£490m) to reduce the serious burden of malnutrition, which affects one in three people in the world.

The crisis “endangers the physical and mental wellbeing of present and future generations”, warned Kofi Annan, speaking in advance of the global nutrition summit in Milan on Saturday. “We need further urgent investments so that people, communities and nations can reach their full potential.”

Related: Gasping for breath: pneumonia's deadly toll among the hungry children of Kenya

Related: ‘My baby went to sleep and didn't wake up’: young lives lost to Ghana's silent killer

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IFPRI Director General Shenggen Fan wins Fudan Management Excellence Award

By saggarwal from IFPRI Updates: News Releases RSS Feeds. Published on Nov 02, 2017.

Nov 4, 2017
Press Statement

IFPRI Director General Shenggen Fan wins Fudan Management Excellence Award

Shenggen Fan, IFPRI director general was awarded the 2017 Fudan Management Excellence Award.

Gasping for breath: pneumonia's deadly toll among the hungry children of Kenya

By Karen McVeigh from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Nov 02, 2017.

A disease that claims the lives of two children under five a minute worldwide has hit drought-stricken Kenya hard, its spread driven by malnutrition

The baby lying under a red printed blanket is gasping for air. Her tiny chest is convulsed with the effort of drawing oxygen into her lungs and,as her mother looks on helplessly, her pupils roll back under half-closed eyelids.

Sumea, six months old, from Lodwar, Kenya, is suffering from the disease parents here fear the most: pneumonia. Without treatment, she could be dead in a day or two. In Kenya, one of the worst countries affected by the disease, it claimed the lives of 22,473 people in 2015, almost all under the age of two.

Related: Drought takes centre stage in Kenya's election campaign as food prices rise

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Global Alliance Releases New Tools to Guide Evidence-based Solutions Across Health, Development, and Environment

By saggarwal from IFPRI Updates: News Releases RSS Feeds. Published on Oct 25, 2017.

Oct 25, 2017
Press Release

Global Alliance Releases New Tools to Guide Evidence-based Solutions Across Health, Development, and Environment

The Bridge Collaborative, a global alliance of 90 organizations from 23 countries, today released two new tools to assist decision-makers solving big challenges facing health, development, and the environment.

Invasion of maize-eating caterpillars worsens hunger crisis in Africa

By Ruth Maclean in Dakar from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Oct 25, 2017.

Crops that feed 200 million people at risk from destructive march of fall armyworm, as agriculture experts call for urgent action

The crops that 200 million people rely on in Africa are under threat from a caterpillar that is spreading throughout the continent, agriculture experts have warned.

Urgent action needs to be taken to stop the fall armyworm’s destructive march across the continent.

Related: Armyworms: The hungry caterpillar threatening a global food crisis

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‘My baby went to sleep and didn't wake up’: young lives lost to Ghana's silent killer

By from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Oct 23, 2017.

Malnutrition prevents almost a fifth of children in Ghana from growing properly. The problem is particularly acute in Bentum, Apprah and Nyanyano, rural communities with scant medical facilities, where pregnant women rarely get the right food and mothers have nowhere to turn

All photographs and interviews by UBELONG, in partnership with Newton Europe

There is no war or famine in Ghana, and the economy is growing, yet malnutrition remains a silent killer that accounts for one-third of all child deaths in the country.

Although mortality rates are slowly starting to come down across the west African country, Ghana is struggling with high levels of stunting, a condition caused by chronic lack of nutrition in pregnancy and early childhood that permanently affects a baby’s mental and physical development.

Child malnutrition is not only about nutrient intake. No sanitation and no waste management make things worse

Lack of potable water means infections, malaria and diarrhoea, increasing child mortality and exacerbating malnutrition

Most households spend less than $10 a week to feed an entire family

Most students at school are malnourished and many fall asleep during the day or have problems concentrating in class

This is a world of mothers – they struggle alone for their children. Most fathers are not involved in childcare

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Fracking industry advances with phase one exploratory applications in South Africa

By SusanClark from News. Published on Oct 20, 2017.

Fracking industry advances with phase one exploratory applications in South Africa
SusanClark 20th October 2017
Teaser Media

The true cost of a plate of food: $1 in New York, $320 in South Sudan

By Kate Hodal from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Oct 16, 2017.

Research reveals the stark inequality that drives the global hunger crisis, with the poorest people paying more than they earn in a day for a single meal

The world’s poorest pay more than a day’s wages for a single plate of food, according to a report from the World Food Programme, which reveals that the same bean stew can cost the average consumer in New York just $1.20, while the price tag is more than $320 in South Sudan.

The research, released to coincide with World Food Day on Monday, underlines the sheer discrepancy of consumers’ purchasing power around the world by measuring the relative cost of food in various countries against a single baseline.

Related: 'I was so hungry I ate water lilies': southern Africa's food crisis in a dozen dishes | John Vidal

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'If the land isn't worked, it decays': Tunisia's battle to keep the desert at bay

By Simon Speakman Cordall in El Fahs from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Oct 13, 2017.

With social tensions high and unemployment rife, agriculture offers Tunisians a vital lifeline. But as vast swaths of countryside turn to desert, the race is on to ensure there is land left to cultivate

The dusty Peugeot rumbles along the road, parallel to the ancient aqueduct that once delivered water from the springs of Zaghouan in Tunisia’s Dorsal mountains to ancient Carthage, about 57km north. However, the waters around Zaghouan have long run dry and, if action is not taken soon, so might much of the land around it.

It is not just Zaghouan. “Ninety-five per cent of the [arable] land is in the process of desertification,” explains Sarah Toumi, president and founder of Acacias for All, a social enterprise aimed at checking the descent of Tunisia’s countryside into arid desert. “There is less than 1% of fertile organic material left in the soil, meaning it’s really poor and can easily become desert. By 2030, it will all become a desert if we do nothing.”

Related: Tunisia: 'Nothing’s changed since the revolution' – in pictures

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Only modernised commercial farms will fill Africa's plate, economists warn

By Kate Lyons from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Oct 10, 2017.

With Africa’s population set to double by 2050, experts say the continent must ditch traditional farming methods in favour of modern technology

African farming must modernise and replace its ageing workforce if the continent is going to be able to feed its rising population, a report by leading economists has warned.

A transformation from small-scale subsistence farms to mechanised, more commercially viable farms is essential, said experts at the Ghana-based African Centre for Economic Transformation, who outlined a bold plan to revolutionise agriculture and fuel economic growth in a report launched Tuesday at an African finance ministers meeting at the World Bank and backed by former UN secretary general Kofi Annan.

Related: Modern agriculture cultivates climate change – we must nurture biodiversity

Related: Barack Obama on food and climate change: ‘We can still act and it won’t be too late’

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Tensions in Uganda after funding delays lead to reduced food rations for refugees

By Samuel Okiror in Kampala from Food security | The Guardian. Published on Oct 09, 2017.

World Food Programme forced to cut grain handouts as lack of funding and sheer number of people fleeing South Sudan’s conflict leave agencies overwhelmed

The flood of people fleeing South Sudan, coupled with delays and constraints on funding, has led to a shortfall in food rations to refugees.

According to agencies working on the ground in Uganda, where most of the refugees have been arriving from the conflict across the border, food supply lines are being shut down and distribution of aid is becoming increasing irregular.

Related: Portraits of South Sudanese refugees in Uganda – in pictures

Related: Bonded by spilt blood, South Sudanese refugees in Uganda reach million mark

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What the closure of a small Suffolk factory says about the future of the automotive industry

By brendan from News. Published on Aug 30, 2017.

What the closure of a small Suffolk factory says about the future of the automotive industry
brendan 30th August 2017
Teaser Media

Digging yourself a hole: how Australia is keeping coal current

By brendan from News. Published on Aug 30, 2017.

Digging yourself a hole: how Australia is keeping coal current
brendan 30th August 2017
Teaser Media

How a circular economy can help prevent a global water crisis

By brendan from News. Published on Aug 29, 2017.

How a circular economy can help prevent a global water crisis
brendan 29th August 2017
Teaser Media

Is Hurricane Harvey a harbinger for America’s future?

By brendan from News. Published on Aug 29, 2017.

Is Hurricane Harvey a harbinger for America’s future?
brendan 29th August 2017
Teaser Media

New report says electric cars will dramatically improve Britain's energy security

By SusanClark from News. Published on Aug 25, 2017.

New report says electric cars will dramatically improve Britain's energy security
SusanClark 25th August 2017
Teaser Media

Climate change could tarnish the flavour of cava, study suggests

By brendan from News. Published on Aug 23, 2017.

Climate change could tarnish the flavour of cava, study suggests
brendan 23rd August 2017
Teaser Media

How to win the climate wars – talk about local ‘pollution’ not global warming

By brendan from News. Published on Aug 23, 2017.

How to win the climate wars – talk about local ‘pollution’ not global warming
brendan 23rd August 2017
Teaser Media

Ecologist Special Report: The Al Hima Revival

By SusanClark from News. Published on Aug 22, 2017.

Ecologist Special Report: The Al Hima Revival
SusanClark 22nd August 2017
Teaser Media

Dealing with climate migration: 'what matters are our actions'

By brendan from News. Published on Aug 21, 2017.

Dealing with climate migration: 'what matters are our actions'
brendan 21st August 2017
Teaser Media

Fin del Mandato: Una mirada retrospectiva y prospectiva

By (Nick Jacobs) from Biocombustibles - Olivier De Schutter | United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food. Published on Jun 04, 2014.

[3 de junio de 2014] GINEBRA – El 30 de mayo, Olivier De Schutter finalizó su segundo mandato como Relator Especial de Naciones Unidas sobre el derecho a la alimentación. Olivier asumió el cargo el 1 de mayo de 2008 y su mandato fue renovado por otros tres años en 2011.

Unhealthy diets greater threat to health than tobacco; UN expert calls for global regulation

By (Nick Jacobs) from Biocombustibles - Olivier De Schutter | United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food. Published on May 19, 2014.

[19 May 2014] GENEVA – The UN Special Rapporteur on the right to food, Olivier De Schutter, called today for a new global agreement to regulate unhealthy diets.

Governments should use public purse to ‘buy justice’ in food systems – UN right to food expert

By (Nick Jacobs) from Biocombustibles - Olivier De Schutter | United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food. Published on May 15, 2014.

[15 May 2014] GENEVA – Governments must exploit the full potential of public food purchasing in order to make food systems fairer and more sustainable, the UN Special Rapporteur on the right to food, Olivier De Schutter, urged Thursday.

La democracia y la diversidad pueden subsanar sistemas alimentarios rotos

By (Nick Jacobs) from Biocombustibles - Olivier De Schutter | United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food. Published on Mar 09, 2014.

[10 de marzo de 2014] GINEBRA – El Relator Especial de las Naciones Unidas sobre el derecho a la alimentación, Olivier De Schutter, hizo hoy un llamamiento para que se rediseñen de forma radical y democrática los sistemas alimentarios mundiales de forma que garanticen el derecho humano a una alimentación adecuada y el derecho fundamental de toda persona a no padecer hambre.

Registration opens for landmark conference on the transition to sustainable societies: EU5P

By (Nick Jacobs) from Biocombustibles - Olivier De Schutter | United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food. Published on Jan 28, 2014.

[29 January 2014] BRUSSELS – Olivier De Schutter is pleased to announce that registration is now open for the Francqui International Conference on "Europe's Fifth Project" (EU5P), taking place on 8-9 May 2014 at the Palais des Académies in Brussels. Those interested in attending are invited to consult the full programme, which is now available.

UN right to food expert: “As Malaysia rises to ‘high-income status’, it must focus on the most vulnerable”

By (Nick Jacobs) from Biocombustibles - Olivier De Schutter | United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food. Published on Dec 17, 2013.

[18 December 2013] KUALA LUMPUR – “As it moves towards becoming a high-income country, Malaysia must ensure that growth is not achieved at the expense of the environment and the rights of vulnerable groups in society, such as the indigenous communities and migrant workers,” the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the right to food, Olivier De Schutter, said today at the end of his first official visit to the country.

“Bali package must allow ambitious food security policies” – UN expert on WTO Summit

By (Nick Jacobs) from Biocombustibles - Olivier De Schutter | United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food. Published on Dec 02, 2013.

GENEVA (2 December 2013) – The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the right to food, Olivier De Schutter, today called for developing countries to be granted the freedom to use food reserves to help secure the right to food, without the threat of sanctions under current World Trade Organization (WTO) rules.

The EU's Fifth Project: Transitional Governance in the Service of Sustainable Societies

By (Nick Jacobs) from Biocombustibles - Olivier De Schutter | United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food. Published on Nov 19, 2013.

[19 November 2013] BRUSSELS – "We need alternatives to GDP growth as the goal of public policy, and we need alternatives to work and wealth accumulation as the driving forces in our lives. A genuine transition in the way we live is the only true path to sustainability. But it must be accompanied by a transition in the way we govern. This is Europe’s fifth project.”

UN expert praises Africa’s commitment to “the right to adequate food”

By (Nick Jacobs) from Biocombustibles - Olivier De Schutter | United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food. Published on Oct 30, 2013.

[30 October 2013] GENEVA – The African Union is sending an important signal by using this year’s Africa Day for Food and Nutrition Security (Africa Day) to buttress the concept of the “right to adequate food” as an organizing framework for policies and strategies to address food and nutrition insecurity in Africa.

"El derecho a la alimentación ya no es un derecho olvidado" – el Relator Especial de la ONU elogia una década de progreso

By (Nick Jacobs) from Biocombustibles - Olivier De Schutter | United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food. Published on Oct 24, 2013.

[25 de octubre de 2013] NEW YORK / GINEBRA – En su informe final ante la Asamblea General de la ONU, el Relator Especial de las Naciones Unidas sobre el Derecho a la Alimentación, Olivier De Schutter, ha acogido con satisfacción "el resurgimiento de los derechos" que ha podido seguir atentamente en todo el mundo durante la última década.

A recent paper delineates the Climate-Smart Village approach as an integrative strategy for scaling up adaptation options in agriculture

By from CCAFS Research highlights. Published on Feb 19, 2018.

The bridge between food security as a concept and as reality for millions of people remains wide despite increases in global food production. With almost 800 million people having insufficient food, the situation is only exacerbated by climatic impacts over food production. Studies have recurrently shown how food production will continue to be impacted due to climate-induced challenges.

However, the availability of various options for reducing the negative impacts of climate change at our disposal opens up a platform for testing, evaluating and assessing the best options and practices to help build up resilience and also reduce emissions from the agricultural sector. Climate-smart agriculture (CSA) in this situation emerges as the method and practice for increasing sustainable agricultural production by adaptation to climatic changes and thereby enhance resilience.

Agricultural research for development

In a recent paper titled ‘The climate-smart village approach: framework of an integrative strategy for scaling up adaptation options in agriculture’ by researchers from the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS), a process of resilience building with CSA interventions through the Climate-Smart Village (CSV) approach was elaborated with early results from Asia, Africa and Latin America.

At the outset, the paper emphasizes that despite several successful CSA programs on board, there is still a weak uptake of the same by farming communities. One of the critical reasons for this is the lack of evidence at the disposal of development professionals regarding the ways to practically incorporate innovations into agricultural systems. In line with this observation, this paper delineates a conceptual framework of the CSV approach that serves as a platform to generate evidence on the efficacy of climate-smart options in diverse agro-climatic and production systems.

Participate to generate: the CSV approach

As a means for Agriculture for Development (AR4D), the CSV approach allows for testing technological and institutional options for dealing with climate change in agriculture through a participatory approach. By being the platform itself, CSVs help generate evidence of which CSA options work best or do not work starting from local scales, thereby, helping a range of stakeholders-policy makers, agricultural development practitioners, investors among others in making informed decisions. The authors write:

With every CSV site having its own theory of change (TOC; a narrative description of the logical causal chain from research activities to impact) linked to national priorities to ensure that it is consistent with initiatives and actions across different scales.”

Key components of a CSV AR4D approach: Source: Aggarwal et al. 2018

Further onus is added to the approach by keeping it locally contextualized, with different options being selected for the CSV sites depending on the agro-ecological characteristics, development levels as well as capacities of the farming community and local authorities, thus, the result being a portfolio (weather-smart, water-smart, seed/breed-smart, carbon/nutrient-smart, institutional/market-smart) of interventions instead of single technologies. Most importantly, the approach differs from existing ones with its focus on strengthening capacities of the local beneficiaries in ways that makes the model self-sustainable rather than being wholly dependent upon the parallel existence of funds.

Outline of the steps in a typical CSV AR4D site. Steps are based on stakeholder engagement and seldom follow a simple linear model. Source: Aggarwal et al. 2018

Global distribution of CSVs

It was in 2012 that CCAFS started piloting the CSV AR4D approach in Africa and South Asia, and by 2014, expanded the same in Latin America and Southeast Asia, currently having 36 sites across the focal regions. With the help of the Climate Analogues Tool, the global representativeness of the CSV site network has been evaluated. The WorldClim data of precipitation and temperature helped compute the similarity between the monthly climates of each CSV with those of all other pixels with the same production system. The literature states that equal weight is given to each parameter and hemispheric differences are accounted for. Also, despite temperature and precipitation not being the only climatic drivers, they largely explain much of the variation in agricultural production worldwide. Thus, it was established that each of the 36 CSV sites encompasses between three to seven localities by taking the maximum similarity value across all CSVs for each pixel.

Global representativeness of the CSV network (blue dots). For each pixel, the value reported corresponds to the maximum similarity between the pixel’s climate and all the Climate-Smart Villages. Source: Aggarwal et al. 2018

Results for scaling

Highly locally contextualized interventions have been applied to the CSVs across the focal points.This paper assesses the results out of Asia, Africa and Latin America that have given reasons for being optimistic about charting a robust scaling-out and scaling-up strategies. In most cases, the approach is being utilized by the national governments as learning grounds and are using the evidence for developing their agricultural development strategies.

For example, Nepal government has announced the implementation of CSVs as part of their national strategy. In Senegal, evidences from CSVs have been used to mainstream some CSA technologies in the nation’s Accelerated Program for Agriculture. The government of Haryana in India decided to scale out the interventions in 500 villages. Successful scaling out strategies assume a multi-dimensional character which include not only convergence with national/local programs but also farmer exchanges, study tours, ICT induced dissemination and outreach, among others. Although evidences for CSV approach are still being accumulated, a systematic evaluation of this framework across the different agricultural production systems is necessary. 

Download the paper: Aggarwal, P. K., A. Jarvis, B. M. Campbell, R. B. Zougmoré, A. Khatri-Chhetri, S. J. Vermeulen, A. Loboguerrero, L. S. Sebastian, J.Kinyangi, O. Bonilla-Findji, M. Radeny, J. Recha, D. Martinez-Baron, J. Ramirez-Villegas, S. Huyer, P. Thornton, E.Wollenberg, J.Hansen, P. Alvarez-Toro, A. Aguilar-Ariza, D. Arango-Londoño, V. Patiño-Bravo, O.Rivera, M. Ouedraogo and B. Tan Yen. 2018. The climate-smart village approach: framework of an integrative strategy for scaling up adaptation options in agriculture. Ecology and Society 23(1):14

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Showing the way to climate-smart agriculture around the world

By from CCAFS Research highlights. Published on Oct 09, 2017.

Growing impacts of climate change on agricultural production poses major challenges for farmers’ food security and livelihoods. At the same time, to meet the global food demand by 2050, agricultural production must increase by 60%.

Climate-smart agriculture (CSA) addresses the challenges of agriculture and climate change by increasing productivity while enhancing farmers’ resilience and reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. CSA initiatives consider these three objectives together at different scales (from farm to landscape), at different levels (from local to global), and over short and long time horizons, taking into account national and local specificities and priorities.

The CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) and the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), in partnership with the World Bank, CATIE and USAID, have been working together on the CSA Country Profiles publication series that gives an overview of the agricultural challenges in countries around the world, and highlight country-specific CSA practices and technologies and assess their relation to adaptation, mitigation, productivity, institutions and finance. The country profiles help open pathways for sustainably increase productivity, adapt and build resilience to climate change, and reduce GHG emissions where possible.

CCAFS and CIAT launched profiles in the last years of Latin America and the Caribbean, Mexico, Peru, Costa Rica, Colombia, El Salvador, Grenada, Nicaragua, Uruguay, Sri Lanka, Rwanda, Kenya, Senegal and Moldova, and new country profiles have recently been released for Mozambique, Tanzania, Zambia, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, Pakistan and the Philippines.

What do these profiles tell us?

Each country profile describes the relevance of agriculture in the given country, for example, agriculture’s contribution to the country’s gross domestic product, the production systems that are key for food security, agricultural greenhouse gas emissions and the challenges for the agricultural sector.

For example, the country profile for the Philippines details how agriculture is a key economic sector in the Philippines, contributing to approximately 12% of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) and employing around 32% of the economically active population. A combination of farm characteristics (i.e., small-scale and fragmented), a lack of infrastructure, and policy and institutional barriers has left the sector underdeveloped and unable to meet the food requirements of the growing population. This has resulted in a heavy reliance on food imports, especially wheat and rice, the population’s main staple crops. Top agricultural exports such as banana, coconut, pineapple, and other tropical fruits have the potential to increase growth in the agricultural sector.

The economic relevance of agriculture in the Philippines. Source: Climate-Resilient Agriculture in Philippines

Informative infographics complement the analyses with key knowledge on health, food security and aid, access to basic needs (portable water, electricity, education), land holding and distribution of wealth.

For example, Nepal is endowed with an array of geographical, topographic, climate, and ecological conditions, as well as with diverse cultural norms and social groups. These have led to an uneven transformation of the society and its economy. Agricultural investments need to acknowledge this diversity through targeted interventions that are adapted to different agro-ecologies and farm types. CSA programs must target vulnerable social groups (e.g. women and youth) by making information and resources available and accessible to them. CSA investments not only enhance crop productivity, but can also contribute to improved working conditions for women (e.g., workload, physical burden) and their position in the society. Water harvesting, improved cattle and goat sheds, and biogas production have especially high potential to reduce the drudgery of farming for women.

Tanzania’s population was estimated at 53 million people in 2015, 68% of them residing in rural areas. Despite the country’s remarkable economic growth in recent years, approximately 28% of the population lives below the poverty line and about half with less than US$ 1.90/day. Unemployment rates amount to 86%. Only 15% and 55% of the population have access to electricity and potable water, respectively. Own productive resources is skewed towards men; barely 20% of the women own agricultural land.

Demographics, access to basic needs and land holding in Nepal. Source: Climate-Smart Agriculture in Nepal Demograhics, access to basic needs and land holding in Tanzania. Source: Climate-Smart Agriculture in Tanzania

The profiles detail projected changes in temperature and precipitation in the countries, and the potential economic impacts of climate change on agriculture, including impact of climate change on net trade in the given country between 2020 and 2050.

In Mozambique, independent of climate change, results indicate that by 2050, the country may become more dependent on imports of all major agricultural commodities. However, maize is likely to be particularly affected by climate change with net imports by 2050 expected to be 6.7 percentage points (pp) more under the scenario with climate change as compared to the scenario without climate change. The imports of rice and pulses, on the other hand, are projected to be 7.7 pp and 9.7 pp less under climate change than under the scenario without climate change. The most significant impact of climate change on the cultivated area of analysed crops is projected to be on legumes, which are estimated to cover up to 16 pp less area under the climate change scenario than under the scenario without climate change.

The impact of climate change on net trade in Mozambique (2020-2050). Source: Climate-Smart Agriculture in Mozambique

Climate-smart agriculture technologies and practices present opportunities for addressing climate change challenges, as well as for economic growth and development of the agriculture sector. The CSA country profiles present a selection of already existing CSA practices with high climate smartness scores according to expert evaluations. As climate-smart technologies and practices are highly context-specific, for a given production system the specific CSA practices differ among countries. The country-specific assessment of top ongoing CSA practices provides policy-makers with important scientific evidence on the effectiveness of climate-smart agricultural practices and technologies in the examined countries. Here are a few examples of selected CSA practices from Pakistan and smartness assessment for top ongoing CSA practices from Bangladesh:

Some of the selected CSA practices and technologies for production systems key for food security in Pakistan. Source: Climate-Smart Agriculture in Pakistan

Detailed smartness assessment for top ongoing CSA practices by production system as implemented in Bangladesh. Examples of aman rice and pulses. Source: Climate-Smart Agriculture in Bangladesh

The profiles also share existing institutions and policies that facilitate the scaling up of CSA, and offers analysis on potential financing opportunities for CSA in the countries.

In Zambia, the establishment of the National Climate Change Fund (NCCF) and mainstreaming of CSA into national policies and strategies represent positive steps towards ensuring an enabling institutional and policy environment supportive of CSA. Improved technical and financial capacity of institutions and stakeholders to operationalize these policies and strategies through projects and programmes on the ground remain key for scaling out CSA. Opportunities exist for women and youth to access funds related to CSA through mechanisms such as The National Youth Fund. However, more needs to be done to address the underlying factors which hinder access of women, youth and vulnerable groups to agricultural finance such as land rights (both formal and customary), small land sizes and labour availability.

Policies for CSA in Zambia. Source: Climate-Smart Agriculture in Zambia

In a recent blog post on the CIAT website on the profiles for Zambia, Tanzania and Mozambique, Ivy Kinyua highlights the common issues emerging from the profiles, namely:

the need for strengthening of the national agricultural extension system and extension partners on matters related to CSA; the generation and sharing of evidence to support the promotion and adoption of climate-smart practices at local level – including through sub-national climate risk profiling; ensuring financing is available for CSA practices from public, private and international climate-financing instruments; the engagement and involvement of the private sector in CSA including microfinance, input supply, value addition and marketing; and the need to integrate gender and other crosscutting issues in CSA programming."

Country profiles for climate action in agriculture

Considering the overwhelming priority accorded to agriculture in the NDCs, national level actions in the sector will lead the way, both in adaptation and mitigation. CCAFS researchers estimate that in order to reach the 2C target of the Paris Agreement, emissions from the agricultural sector will need to be reduced by 1 gigatonne carbon dioxide equivalent per year by 2030; current interventions can only achieve 21-40% of this goal. Therefore, transformative changes are needed in the sector. The country profiles can facilitate this change as they provide snapshot of a developing baseline created to initiate discussion at national and global levels about entry points for investing in CSA at scale, and thereby aim contribute to future climate change adaptation and mitigation actions.

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Global carbon tax would increase undernourished by 80-300 million; alternative strategies protect food security

By from CCAFS Research highlights. Published on Oct 04, 2017.

Research published this week in the journal Environmental Research Letters examines mitigation policy scenarios in the agriculture, forestry and land use sector that would help stabilize climate change to less than a 2 °C increase in global temperature and how they would influence food security. It is one of the first studies to examine the effects of countries’ participation in mitigation, particularly the different roles of developing, emerging and developed countries.

Scientists from the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) and the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) explored how a global carbon tax together with land-based climate change mitigation options would affect the cost of major food commodities. To do this, they used established climate stabilization scenarios for achieving 2 °C with the Global Biosphere Management Model (GLOBIOM), a partial equilibrium model that considers both biophysical and economic changes.

Uniform global carbon tax will not have uniform effects

A widely discussed cost-efficient mitigation policy is a global tax on carbon. Research shows that a USD 10 tax / ton of carbon dioxide equivalent would achieve some mitigation cost-efficiently, and thus not raise food prices significantly. However, a higher carbon tax such as USD 100/ton – which would be necessary if the global community employed carbon taxes as a principle mitigation tool – would cause steeper food price increases, in large part because of the wide extent of inefficient food production practices and the cost of shifting from these practices to more efficient production. Higher food prices would lead to more food insecurity and undernourishment in some countries.

As long as current food production remains at low levels of productivity, the higher the carbon tax, the higher the food prices, and the more people who would experience food insecurity.

Researchers estimate that a uniform carbon tax could increase the number of undernourished people by 80 to 300 million in 2050.

(a) Relative price impact of a carbon tax (0 – 150 $/tCO2eq) on emissions from agriculture on global commodity prices and (b) regional food price index.

These calculations assume no shifts in production to more emission-efficient systems, so may overestimate price impacts. Guide to abbreviations: CIS – Commonwealth of Independent States, EAS – East Asia, EU28 – European Union, LAM – Latin America, MEN – Middle East and North Africa, NAM – North America, OCE – Oceania, SAS – South Asia, SEA – South East Asia, SSA – Sub-Saharan Africa. WLD - World. Source: Figure 1, Frank et al. 2017)

Researchers found that the carbon tax would raise the price of most food commodities, but most significantly in emission-intensive beef, rice, and milk.

While food prices would increase across the globe, prices would increase the most in Oceania, Southeast Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, and South Asia due to emission-intensive agricultural production, emission-intensive diets, or both.

Achieving climate change mitigation while protecting food security

A diverse portfolio of ambitious low emissions development practices, policies and economic measures is needed to achieve food security, as described in the Environmental Research Letters paper and a related info note, titled 'Carbon prices, climate change mitigation & food security: How to avoid trade-offs?'

Global cooperation, a diverse mitigation option portfolio, and win-win options, such as possibly soil carbon sequestration, are key to achieve ambitious climate change mitigation targets without jeopardizing food security,” lead author Stefan Frank said. 

Options in the food system include:

  • soil organic carbon sequestration,
  • reduced deforestation,
  • sustainable intensification of agriculture,
  • diet shift toward less emission-intensive   foods,
  • reducing food loss and waste, and
  • improved technologies.

Policy and economic measures include:

  • international trade mechanisms,
  • climate finance,
  • agricultural investment, and
  • redistribution of a carbon tax.

While some land-based mitigation options will increase food prices, and therefore food insecurity, the study presents two strategies that can maximize benefits for the climate while maintaining food security: reducing deforestation and increasing soil carbon sequestration.

Regions that can reduce deforestation can mitigate with less cost to food security

The analysis described in the study found that reducing emissions from land-use change in land-rich countries has large mitigation potential and limited trade-offs with food security. For example, if developed countries and Brazil followed a cost-efficient mitigation regime, mitigation would be achieved through avoided deforestation and have little impact on agricultural production. Conversely, mitigation in densely populated countries with intensive agriculture would likely lead to more significant decreases in agricultural production and resulting increases in food insecurity.

Soil organic carbon sequestration offers a potential we must pursue

Humans can increase soil organic carbon through cropland and grassland management, biochar application, enhanced biomass in roots, and restoration of degraded lands and organic soils – and such efforts most often also improve soil productivity and water storage.

Researchers are investigating how to scale up soil organic carbon sequestration and its benefits for soil health, resilience, and food security.

Scenarios resulting from the GLOBIOM model, presented in the article and the info note, 'The potential of soil organic carbon sequestration for climate change mitigation and food security,' estimate that soil organic carbon has the potential to sequester up to 3.5 GtCO2eq/yr by 2050, helping the world limit global warming to 1.5 ºC warming. SOC sequestration potential in 2050 could offset approximately 7% of total 2010 emissions.

Soil carbon has the potential to minimize food price increases, potentially protecting the food security of up to 225 million people.

Soil carbon sequestration is indispensable to achieve ambitious climate change mitigation targets with optimal cost-efficiency and tempered impacts to food security,” the study said.


More information:

This work was undertaken with support from USAID and CGIAR Fund and bilateral donors. IIASA also received support for this work from the  European Union’s FP7 Project FoodSecure, the Belmont Forum/FACCE-JPI funded DEVIL project, UGRASS (NE/M016900/1), IIASA’s Tropical Futures Initiative (TFI), and the GCP’s Managing Global Negative Emissions Technologies (MaGNET) program.

Report identifies high-yield, low-emission options for cereal systems in South Asia

By from CCAFS Research highlights. Published on Sep 04, 2017.

Increasing food demand of a growing population and changing consumption patterns are likely to cause a 30% increase in global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from agriculture by 2050. Asian and African countries will account for most of the increase.

Already, India is the third largest GHG emitter in the world, and agriculture is the second largest source of GHG emissions in the country, accounting for ~18% of gross national emissions. With a population of more than 1.3 billion and increasing, agricultural production is expected to increase significantly.

Given India's prominence, it is signficant that India recently declared a voluntary goal of reducing the emission intensity of its gross domestic product by 35% over the 2005 level by 2030. The government indicated that land-based mitigation measures are critical to achieving this target.  

Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change

Recent research by the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) and CCAFS published in the journal Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Changeshows that India’s goal of reducing emission intensity can be aligned with food security in a low emissions development scenario. In the figure below, the strong negative correlation between grain yield and emission intensity for rice, wheat and maize means that emission intensity can be reduced while farmers' yields increase.


The study identified high-yield, low-emission pathways for rice, wheat and maize production in the Indo-Gangetic Plains of India and calls for research and socio-economic interventions to support wide-scale adoption by smallholder farmers to meet food security and climate goals.

High-yield, low-emissions options for cereals

In cereals, the key determinants for agricultural emissions are rate, time and frequency of nitrogen fertilizer application, tillage practice (e.g. conventional or zero-tillage), application of manure and incorporation of crop residues. The study found that in the three main cereal crops of India - rice, wheat and maize - nitrous oxide (N2O) and methane (CH4) emissions increase with increased use of nitrogen inputs.

Eliminating nitrogen fertilizer inputs is not an option because it will cause yields – and thus household and national food security – to decrease precipitously. In India, the goal is that farmers scale back fertilizer use to optimum levels.

Researchers found that 82-95% farmers in a high-input production zone (Karnal, Haryana) and 23-40% farmers in the low-input production zone (Vaishali, Bihar) exceeded the optimum rate of application of nitrogen fertilizer in rice and wheat. This over-use of fertilizer indicates that India has a huge opportunity to reduce GHG emissions whilst maintaining production levels by reducing nitrogen fertilizer application rates to optimum levels and adopting fertilizer management practices that increase nutrient-use-efficiency.

In the case of rice production in the Karnal district of Haryana, research aimed to develop pathways for emission-efficient production and identify by how much different factors increase production and reduce emissions. Depending on production strategies and available resourcesfarmers have low-emission options immediately available to them. They can:

  1. Reduce emissions without compromising yield by reducing fertilizer amounts;
  2. Improve production with no additional emission by improving fertilizer-use efficiency; or
  3. Increase production and reduce emissions by layering multiple improved practices involving tillage, residue, nutrient and water management.

Socio-economic factors influence adoption of high-yield, low-emission agricultural practices

The study also examined how social drivers such as family size, gender, farm size, and use of information and communication technologies influence changes in practices in cereal production in India.

Researchers found strong associations between grain yield and emissions. Certain socio-economic and household characteristics suggest that efforts to decrease emission intensity in agriculture must focus on both agricultural technologies and socio-economic and human behavioural dimensions directly affecting their adoption. Te authors write:

Our analyses show that the implementation of emission-reducing technologies and practices are influenced by the household’s socio-economic conditions including family size, gender of household head and farm size, as well as access to information through training and use of ICT. These socio-economic factors must be taken into account when considering the scaling out of mitigation-related interventions and the implementation of high-yield low-emission pathways in agriculture. Future research evaluating a high-yield low-emission pathway in agriculture should consider not only emission-reducing interventions but also the tradeoffs between GHG emissions and food/nutrition security in different agricultural production systems.”

Capacity building to increase farmers’ awareness and skills in agriculture and climate change contributes to increased production and reduced GHG emission intensity. Thus, farmers’ societies, farm cooperatives and local non-governmental organizations can play a vital role in encouraging farmers to adopt high-yield, low-emission pathways.

Local to national adoption of high-yield, low-emission pathways for cereals

Reducing fertilizer input without compromising yield represents out-of-pocket financial savings on production for individual farmers, an important adoption incentive. Given current annual consumption of 16 million tonnes of nitrogen in India, small savings at the individual farmer level will lead to huge collective savings.

Additionally, decreasing the amount of wasted fertilizer helps reduce negative environmental externalities, such as water pollution, at local levels. 

At a state and national level, policies that include multiple approaches to increasing farmers' awareness and access to information about climate-smart agricultural practices will be necessary to meet national targets for reductions in GHG emission intensity. Key approaches to reaching male and female farmers from a range of economic and educational backgrounds include: targeted subsidies, mobilization of local civil society organizations, and use of information and communication technologies. 

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Comment les décideurs peuvent-ils anticiper sur les menaces du changement climatique sur la sécurité alimentaire en Afrique de l'Ouest

By Dansira DEMBELE from CCAFS Research highlights. Published on Jul 20, 2017.

La sécurité alimentaire est menacée dans certains endroits du monde. Ceci est dû, en partie, à une croissance démographique continue et au changement climatique. Le risque est d’autant plus accru en Afrique de l'Ouest qui fait face à une population en pleine croissance et à la vulnérabilité de la zone aux effets du changement climatique. Les corolaires de cette croissance démographique et du changement climatique  augmenteront la pression sur les ressources naturelles qui demeurent indispensables à la production de nourriture.

Face à des prévisions peu rassurantes qui se profilent, un groupe de chercheurs spécialistes des changements climatiques de l'Institut International de Recherche sur les Politiques Alimentaires (IFPRI), le Conseil Ouest et Centre Africain pour la Recherche et le Développement Africole (CORAF) et le Programme de Recherche du CGIAR sur le Changement Climatique L’Agriculture et la Sécurité Alimentaire (CCAFS) a élaboré une analyse exhaustive de la situation qui prévaut dans la zone. Cette monographie a été initialement publiée en anglais en 2013 sous le titre “West African Agriculture and Climate Change - A Comprehensive Analysis”. Au regard de son engouement auprès des acteurs francophones de la sous-région, sa version française intitulée “L’Agriculture Ouest Africaine et le Changement Climatique – Une Analyse Exhaustive ” a été produite et est maintenant disponible. Le but de cette monographie est d’aider les décideurs et les chercheurs à mieux comprendre et anticiper les impacts éventuels du changement climatique sur l’agriculture et sur les ménages vulnérables. Cela est rendu possible par l’examen des données actuelles sur l’agriculture et le développement économique, la modélisation des changements climatiques plausibles d’ici 2050, l’utilisation de modèles de culture pour évaluer l’impact des changements climatiques sur la production agricole, et la modélisation à l’échelle mondiale de l’offre et de la demande de produits alimentaires afin d’évaluer les tendances des prix des denrées alimentaires.

En plus d’une synthèse sous-régionale, ce livre comprend des chapitres spécifiques traitant des cas particuliers de onze pays dont le Bénin, le Burkina Faso, la Côte d'Ivoire, le Ghana, la Guinée, le Libéria, le Niger, le Nigéria, le Sénégal, la Sierra Leone et le Togo.

Scénarios pour le futur démographique, climatique et agricole

A l’horizon 2050, tous les scénarios décrits en détail dans le livre, démontrent une augmentation significative de la population des pays ouest-africains, hormis le Cap-Vert.

Shenggen Fan,
Directeur Général
de l’Institut International de Recherche sur les Politiques Alimentaires explique :

D’ici à la moitié du siècle, la population ouest-africaine comptera plus de 35% de la population de l’Afrique subsaharienne et près de 7% de la population mondiale” 

Statistiques récapitulatives des hypothèses sur la population de l’Afrique de l’Ouest utilisées dans le modèle IMPACT, 2010 et 2050

Sur le plan climatique, la constante restera une augmentation des températures. Cependant, l’ampleur de cette augmentation et les impacts diffèreront dans la région en fonction du scénario climatique qui surviendra évidemment. En outre, les scenarios pluviométriques mis en évidence dans la monographie montrent un futur similaire dans le sud du Ghana, du Togo, du Benin et du Nigéria où il est prévu une baisse de la pluviométrie. Seulement, le modèle CSIRO y prévoit une réduction plus importante que le modèle MIROC (CSIRO est le modèle développé par l’Organisation de la Recherche Scientifique et Industrielle du Commonwealth en Australie. Le MIROC est le Modèle pour la Recherche sur le Système Climatique). Ce dernier modèle prédit une augmentation des précipitations dans la zone  sahélienne. 

Il va sans dire que sur la base de ces prévisions  des stratégies d’adaptation devraient être définies pour les paysans vulnérables, qui sûrement expérimenteront des pertes non-négligeables dans leurs moyens de subsistance. 

Les auteurs de la monographie soutiennent que l’inconstance des précipitations accroît les risques de mauvaises récoltes à court terme. A long terme, une baisse des productions est à craindre.  Ceci dénote que l’impact du changement climatique sur l’agriculture ouest-africaine se présente globalement de façon négative. Au Sahel, région déjà fragile, le risque est d’autant plus grand. En effet, les modèles CSIRO et MIROC prévoient une diminution générale des rendements du maïs de 5 à 25 % de base dans la plupart des pays le long des côtes méridionales de l’Afrique de l’Ouest et un rendement de 5 à 25 % dans le Sahel. Les deux modèles montrent également une perte dans la zone de référence de la partie septentrionale du Mali, du Burkina Faso et du Nigéria. De même, les rendements de sorgho diminueront de 5 – 25 % en Afrique de l’Ouest, avec des réductions plus prononcées dans certaines régions du Togo, du Bénin, et des régions limitrophes du Ghana et du Nigéria. Les rendements du riz pluvial devraient enregistrer une baisse de 5 à 25 % dans la plupart des régions de la Côte d’Ivoire, du Ghana, du Togo et aussi du Nigéria.

Toutefois, des opportunités existent et peuvent être saisies au rebond ! En effet, tous les deux modèles prévoient aussi une croissance dans le rendement du riz dans la ceinture sahélienne, pendant que la zone de référence disparaitra au Mali et au Niger. De même, certaines régions des parties septentrionales de la Côte d’Ivoire, du Ghana, du Burkina Faso, et du Nigéria avec une croissance de la productivité de 5 à 25 %.

Variation de la moyenne annuelle des précipitations en Afrique de l’Ouest, de 2000 à 2050, modèle a1B CSIRO (millimètres)

Une  contribution utile aux efforts de la CEDEAO en matière de changement climatique

Cette monographie est une recherche sur l’impact du changement climatique sur l’agriculture. Elle donne un aperçu de la région, de sa situation économique actuelle et de sa vulnérabilité au changement climatique. Elle est destinée à apporter une contribution utile aux efforts de la CEDEAO pour élaborer des politiques appropriées liées au climat de la région.

Elle fournit non seulement des données et analyses importantes mais aussi aide à identifier les questions de recherche futures. Elle est également une contribution pour les planificateurs et les décideurs ouest-africains dans le cadre de l’identification des domaines nécessitant un renforcement et des changements positifs potentiels.

C’est ainsi qu’en mettant le changement climatique au premier plan des questions de développement nationales, les chercheurs ont identifié pour les décideurs de la sous-région CEDEAO, les mesures suivantes qu’il convient de prendre: (1) la valeur du développement durable à grande échelle, (2) l’importance des investissements dans les secteurs économiques concernés ainsi que la recherche agricole pour améliorer la productivité agricole, (3) l’importance des initiatives d’intégration économique en cours dans la région ouest-africaine sous la houlette de la Communauté Économique des États de l’Afrique de l’Ouest dans le cadre d’un système de commerce mondial ouvert et (4) la nécessité d’agir rapidement à la fois sur l’adaptation et la lutte contre le changement climatique.

Aussi, des efforts particuliers sont nécessaires pour assurer une sécurité alimentaire durable dans chaque pays. A titre d’exemple les spécialistes recommandent aux décideurs béninois d’investir davantage dans la productivité agricole pour promouvoir la culture des tubercules. Ceci aurait pour impact, à long terme, d’améliorer les revenus des agriculteurs, de réduire les importations et maximiser
 les exportations.

Au Burkina Faso où la disponibilité d’eau et d’autres intrants comme les engrais et les pesticides n’est pas assurée, les auteurs du livre préconisent une forte implication des décideurs dans le développement des cultures maraîchères. La priorité doit être accordée à cette activité, selon eux, car elle semble présenter l’une des meilleures opportunités pour les femmes et les jeunes pour l’amélioration de leurs revenus. 

A travers ce livre, il devient de plus en plus clair pour les décideurs des pays en développement que ni la sécurité alimentaire, ni le changement climatique ne peuvent être traités séparément.

Honduras avanza con las Mesas Agroclimáticas Participativas

By José Luis Urrea from CCAFS Research highlights. Published on Jun 20, 2017.

¿Qué son la Mesas Agroclimáticas Participativas?

Son una innovadora iniciativa que busca integrar actores del sector agropecuario a nivel regional y local con el objetivo de informar, especialmente a los pequeños y medianos productores, sobre los cambios esperados en el clima de su región; cómo estos pueden afectar sus cultivos y qué pueden hacer para reducir los impactos negativos.

¿Quiénes la integran?

La estructura organizativa de una Mesa Agroclimática Participativa, está integrada por los representantes de todos los actores clave de las regiones: gobierno, sociedad civil, organizaciones no gubernamentales, organismos Internacionales de cooperación, gremios profesionales, empresariales, campesinos, academia, mediana, pequeña y microempresa, red de mujeres, red de jóvenes, etc. Las mesas tienen visión integral y participativa por tanto, cualquier actor interesado puede formar parte de esta iniciativa.

¿Cómo se han conformado las Mesas Agroclimaticas Participativas?

El intercambio de experiencias en metodologías para acercar la información climática a las necesidades de los agricultores en países como Senegal derivó en la implementación de Mesas Técnicas Agroclimáticas en Colombia, lideradas por el Ministerio de Agricultura y Desarrollo Rural (MADR) con el apoyo de CIAT-CCAFS. Esta iniciativa sirvió de ejemplo para que la Unidad de Agroambiente Cambio Climático y Gestión del Riesgo (UACC&GR) de la Secretaría de Agricultura y Ganadería (SAG) de Honduras inició en 2016 el establecimiento de varias Mesas Agroclimáticas en diferentes departamentos del país.

Cada mesa elige su junta directiva, define su área de influencia, la misión, visión y plan operativo.

Boletín Agroclimático

A través de las mesas agroclimaticas establecidas en el país se han empezado a generar boletines regionales para los ciclos productivos, los cuales cuentan con recomendaciones específicas para los principales cultivos de cada una de las regiones . El boletín describe el área de influencia, el comportamiento del Fenómeno del Niño/Niña, las condiciones climáticas para la temporada y las recomendaciones agroclimáticas.

Testimonios de productores participantes

“Estas capacitaciones son una herramienta esencial porque conocemos las condiciones climáticas y así nos preparamos para realizar las siembras”
Amílcar Pérez, La Esperanza

“Conociendo la situación del clima, esto nos indica que tenemos que almacenar agua en el tiempo de invierno para hacer uso de la misma en este tiempo de sequía”.

Ángel Gilberto Alemán, Comayagua

“Tenemos que hacer uso de las semillas tolerantes a sequías que dispone el Gobierno para nosotros los productores”.

Nelson Orellana, Jesús de Otoro

Más información

Honduras makes progress with Participatory Agroclimatic Committees

By José Luis Urrea from CCAFS Research highlights. Published on Jun 12, 2017.

What are the Participatory Agroclimatic Committees?

The term refers to an innovative initiative that aims to integrate actors from the agricultural sector at regional and local level in order to inform especially small and medium-size producers about climate change predictions in their region, how these might affect their crops and what they can do to reduce negative impacts.

Who takes part in a Participatory Agroclimatic Committee?

A participatory Agroclimatic Committee is made up of representatives of all the key stakeholders in the regions: government, civil society, non-governmental organizations, international cooperation agencies, professional associations, entrepreneurs, farmers, academics, micro-enterprises, women and youth networks, etc. The committes have an integrative and participative vision, therefore, any interested party can be part of this initiative.

How did the Local Participatory Technical Agricultural Committees come to exist?

The starting point was the exchange of experiences regarding methodologies for providing farmers in Senegal with climate information. This led to the implementation of Local Agroclimatic Technical Committees (LTACs) in Colombia, led by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MADR) with the support of CIAT-CCAFS. This initiative served as an example for the Agro-Environmental, Climate Change and Risk Management Unit (UACC&GR) within the Honduran Ministry for Agriculture and Livestock (SAG) to start in 2016, creating several such committees in various departments across the country. Each committee chooses its board of directors, defines its area of influence, mission, vision and operational plan. 

Agroclimatic newsletter

Setting Local Technical Agricultural Committees across the country helped generate regional newsletters for production cycles, which include specific recommendations for the main crops in each region. The newsletters describe the area of influence, patterns in El Nino/La Nina phenomena, seasonal weather and agro-climatic conditions.

Testimonials of participating farmers

"These trainings are an essential tool as we receive information about weather conditions and we can prepare our crops.”

Amílcar Pérez, La Esperanza

“Knowing weather conditions helps us know to save water during winter so that we can use it during drought conditions.”

Ángel Gilberto Alemán, Comayagua

“We should make use of the drought-tolerant seeds that the government makes available for us farmers.”

Nelson Orellana, Jesús de Otoro


More information:

Joint assessment in Vietnam to inform future climate-smart agriculture investments

By Bernadette Joven from CCAFS Research highlights. Published on Jun 07, 2017.

Climate change is both a challenge and opportunity for communities in Southeast Asia, especially the smallholder farmers across the different countries. Sustainable development and resilience to changes in the climate need to be based on the introduction and adoption of innovative climate-smart agriculture (CSA) solutions at the appropriate scales.

In Vietnam, the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) has been working with other CGIAR centers, international research and development organizations and national institutions to respond to the climate challenges in the country’s regions. Rapid assessments have been conducted in the provinces severely affected by drought and salinity intrusion in 2015 and 2016.

“The driest area in Vietnam”

The South Central Coast (SCC) in Vietnam has experienced drought each year, but impacts in the region were especially severe during the 2015-2016 dry season. The provinces of Khanh Hoa, Ninh Thuan and Binh Thuan were particularly affected. Water levels in the reservoirs in Khanh Hoa were reduced by 50%, while Binh Thuan reservoirs saw 60% reductions and Ninh Thuan 75%.

One of the sites visited during the assessment in the SCC. The region experiences drought, which is one of the main issues to be addressed. Photo: L. Sebastian (CCAFS)

This does not bode well for the communities as water for agricultural and domestic use is mainly sourced from the reservoirs. About 23,000 ha of rice fields in the three provinces were left as fallow, and 32,000 households in Ninh Thuan and Binh Thuan were affected due to the severe drought.

In light of the increasing negative impacts of climate change, identifying appropriate solutions for agricultural production of the region is an urgent requirement,” notes the joint assessment team for the SCC.

CSA options should be identified and incorporated into the short-, medium-, and long-term action plans for the region. In this regard, DCP and CCAFS had organized a rapid assessment of the SCC, to analyze the challenges and opportunities in the region, as well as provide technical recommendations to MARD.

Impacts of climate change in the SCC

The rapid joint assessment team comprised local experts from DCP, MARD and the Agricultural Science Institute for Southern Central Region of Vietnam (ASISOV), as well as researchers from the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF), International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT), International Water Management Institute (IWMI) and Center for Agriculture and Biosciences International (CABI).

Between 1 and 5 April 2017, the members of the team visited select districts in Khanh Hoa, Ninh Thuan and Binh Thuan provinces. They conducted field observations, key informant interviews with provincial and district-level government officials, and interviews with farming households and local government representatives.

Many farmers in the lowlands, which is the rice production area, still use too much water for farming, poorly balance fertilizer inputs and apply substantial amounts of pesticides. Limited groundwater sources in the coastal areas result in over-extraction of ground and surface water, and salinity intrusion. On the other hand, the hilly areas experience soil erosion and flooding due to the generally low vegetation cover in the region.

Farmers also have to deal with either heavy rainfall, flooding or severe drought during the peak crop growth stages. All these factors ultimately affect crop productivity and the livelihoods of these smallholders.

Farmers showing their crops to the assessment team. Sometimes the grape crops in SCC would crack because of unusually heavy rainfall during harvest season. Photo: L. Sebastian (CCAFS)

Opportunities for CSA in the SCC

As discussed in the assessment report, agricultural water management should be the main focus of CSA options because the SCC region mainly experiences the effects of climate change in terms of water-related issues.

The assessment team suggested the following seven actions: (1) agricultural drought mapping; (2) development of a more effective water-resource infrastructure; (3) increased nutrient and water productivity through improved agronomic practices; (4) strengthening water users groups; (5) promotion of agricultural diversification with crops suitable to the drought conditions; (6) improvement of watershed and agroforestry area management; and (7) development of an integrated systems master plan for adaptation in each of the provinces and the region as a whole.

Given the region’s exposure to natural hazards, a piecemeal approach is unlikely to have the desired effect,” the team puts it in the report. 

If managed correctly (and not in a piecemeal approach), the integrated solutions would not only help the agricultural sector adapt to climate change, but also to transform it towards increased productivity and sustainability.

These recommendations should be considered in formulating the policies and regulations, especially those regarding crop diversification, land use plans, irrigation policies and loans. These can also inform the development of incentives for implementing innovative technologies and practices, and investment prioritization and capacity development initiatives.

The team also recommended that the outputs of historic and ongoing collaborations among CGIAR, other international and local institutions have helped Vietnam respond to the needs of the different regions, and the country as a whole. Such partnerships are important in increasing the uptake of CSA, for the improvement of farmers’ livelihoods and resilience to climate change.

Read the assessment report:

Assessment of potential CSA options for future agriculture production in the South Central Coast region of Vietnam

Read more:

El poder de las alianzas: aspectos destacados del informe anual de CCAFS

By from CCAFS Research highlights. Published on May 18, 2017.

El poder de las alianzas - en ayudar a fomentar los resultados y contribuir a importantes resultados científicos - es el tema de nuestro informe anual de 2016 y una estrategia clave que seguirá potenciando a CCAFS en el futuro

Bruce Campbell, Director de CCAFS

Lea el reporte anual CCAFS 2016

(contenido disponible en inglés)

Impacto a través de políticas y alianzas

En más de 20 países, los científicos de CCAFS trabajan en el terreno y en iniciativas mundiales con agricultores, sociedad civil, gobiernos e investigadores para ayudar a avanzar los conceptos y prácticas en torno a la agricultura sostenible adaptada al clima (ASAC).

En el Sur de Asia, CCAFS está trabajando con las comunidades rurales para ampliar los Territorios Sostenibles Adaptados al Clima (TeSAC). En el 2016, los gobiernos, el sector privado y agencias de desarrollo se comprometieron a escalar el enfoque TeSAC y las acciones locales relacionadas en más de 2.000 territorios en el sur de Asia. Esto implica la construcción de portafolios de intervenciones junto con los agricultores, los Sistemas Nacionales de Investigación Agrícola, los centros del CGIAR, las universidades locales, las organizaciones no gubernamentales, el sector privado y las organizaciones de productores.


Desarrollando capacidades y comunicando innovadoramente

Los pequeños productores en los países en desarrollo son particularmente vulnerables a los efectos de la variabilidad climática y los fenómenos meteorológicos extremos. Apoyar a los agricultores con servicios de información meteorológica y climática para la toma de decisiones en la agricultura es una estrategia esencial para mejorar la seguridad alimentaria en las zonas ya vulnerables y un componente clave de la ASAC. Aunque las iniciativas existentes han tenido éxito en llegar a los pequeños agricultores, el reto de escalar el impacto sobre el terreno de los servicios climáticos para las comunidades vulnerables permanece.

En Colombia, CCAFS y el Centro Internacional de Agricultura Tropical (CIAT) trabajaron en estrecha colaboración con el Ministerio de Agricultura y Desarrollo Rural para fortalecer la capacidad de adaptación de los agricultores a la variabilidad climática. La ciencia de predicción agroclimática del CIAT-CCAFS ha cambiado profundamente cómo las organizaciones del sector agrícola generan y comparten las recomendaciones de adaptación a la variabilidad climática.

LEA MÁS HISTORIAS SOBRE desarrollo de capacidades y comunicaciones innovadoras EN EL INFORME ANUAL

Ciencia revolucionaria e innovación

En los planes sobre cambio climático presentados a las Naciones Unidas en 2016, 104 países incluyeron intenciones de reducir las emisiones del sector agropecuario, pero no se fijó un objetivo mundial de mitigación de la agricultura. Para cerrar esta brecha, los científicos de CCAFS, con socios de 5 centros CGIAR (CIAT, CIFOR, CIMMYT, ILRI e IRRI) y 15 organizaciones más, calcularon por primera vez la cantidad de reducciones de emisiones de la agricultura necesarias para limitar el calentamiento a 2°C para el año 2100. Encontraron que las emisiones anuales de la agricultura deben reducirse 1 gigatoneladas de dióxido de carbono equivalente por año (GtCO2e / año) para el año 2030 en aras de mantenerse dentro del límite de 2°C y que las acciones incrementales que estamos tomando serán insuficientes Para cumplir con este objetivo. Los científicos pidieron el desarrollo urgente y la implementación de opciones técnicas transformadoras.


Integración de género y juventudes

Las visitas de intercambio entre las comunidades rurales muestran a los agricultores cómo sus pares se están adaptando y creando resiliencia al cambio climático. CCAFS utiliza un enfoque de "fincas del futuro" y organiza viajes para líderes comunitarios a lugares que tienen un clima similar al que sus comunidades podrían experimentar en el futuro. Los agricultores son capaces de ver lo que pueden hacer ahora y cómo pueden prepararse para el futuro.

Una visita organizada para los líderes de Daga-Birame -un TeSAC de CCAFS en Senegal- mostró un camino hacia las oportunidades económicas de la agrosilvicultura. Las mujeres campesinas de Daga-Birame se inspiraron para crear un negocio de jugos llamado "una mujer, un árbol frutal" para generar ingresos y mejorar la nutrición rápidamente, y reunieron recursos para plantar árboles frutales, una inversión en ingresos y nutrición futuros.


El camino a seguir

Las iniciativas exitosas destacadas en el Informe Anual de 2016 demuestran que las alianzas son cruciales para lograr resultados. Como Bruce Campbell escribe:

El poder de las alianzas es enorme, al igual que los desafíos cada vez más urgentes de adaptación y mitigación que enfrentan los pequeños agricultores. En la Fase II tenemos que lograr aún más, y las alianzas son fundamentales para esa ambición.

Lea el Informe Anual de CCAFS 2016

Power of partnerships: CCAFS 2016 Annual Report highlights

By from CCAFS Research highlights. Published on May 18, 2017.

The power of partnerships – in helping foster outcomes and contributing to important scientific outputs – is the theme of our 2016 annual report and a key strategy that will continue to inform CCAFS going forward." 

Bruce Campbell, Director, CCAFS

Read the CCAFS 2016 Annual report

Impact through policies and partnerships

In more than 20 countries, CCAFS researchers collaborated in farmers' fields and in global initiatives and with farmers, civil society, governments and researchers to help advance the concepts and practices around climate-smart agriculture. 

In South Asia, CCAFS is working with rural communities to expand Climate-Smart Villages. In 2016, governments, private sector and development partners committed to scaling up the climate-smart village approach and related local actions in more than 2,000 villages in South Asia. This involves building portfolios of interventions together with farmers, National Agricultural Research Systems, CGIAR centers, local universities, non-governmental organizations, the private sector and farmers’ groups.

Read more stories about impact through policies and partnerships in the annual report

Capacity development and innovative communication

Smallholder farmers in the developing world are particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate fluctuations and weather extremes. Supporting farmers with weather and climate information services for agricultural decision-making is an essential strategy for enhancing food security in already vulnerable areas, and a key component of climate-smart agriculture. Although existing initiatives have been successful in reaching out to some smallholder farmers, the challenge of broadening the on-the-ground impact of climate services for vulnerable communities remains.

In Colombia, CCAFS and the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIATworked closely with the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to strengthen the adaptive capacity of farmers to climate variability. CIAT-CCAFS’ agroclimatic prediction science has profoundly changed how agricultural sector organizations generate and share climate variability adaptation recommendations.

Read more stories about capacity development and innovative communication in the annual report

Breakthrough science and innovation

In climate change plans submitted to the United Nations in 2016, 104 countries included intentions to reduce emissions in the agriculture sector, but no global target for mitigation from agriculture had been set. To fill this gap, scientists from CCAFS, with partners from 5 CGIAR centers (CIAT, CIFOR, CIMMYT, ILRI and IRRI) and 15 organizations, calculated, for the first time, the amount of agricultural emission reductions needed to limit warming to 2°C in 2100. They found that annual emissions from agriculture must be reduced by 1 gigatonne of carbon dioxide equivalents per year (GtCO2e/yr) by 2030 to stay within the 2°C limit, and that the incremental actions we are taking will be insufficient for meeting this target. Scientists called for urgent development and implementation of transformative technical options.

Read more stories about breakthrough science and innovation in the annual report

Integrating gender and yo​uth

Exchange visits among rural communities show farmers how others are adapting and building resilience to climate change. CCAFS uses a “farms of the future” approach and organizes trips for community leaders to places that have a climate that is similar to what their communities might experience in the future. Farmers are able to see what they can do now and how they can prepare for the future.

A visit organized for leaders from Daga-Birame – a CCAFS Climate-Smart Village in Senegal – showed a path to economic opportunity from agroforestry. Women farmers from Daga-Birame were inspired to create a "one woman, one fruit tree" juice business to generate income and increase nutrition immediately, and they joined resources to plant fruit-bearing trees, an investment in future income and nutrition.

Read more stories about integrating gender and youth in the annual report

Way forward

The successful initiatives highlighted in the 2016 Annual Report demonstrate that partnership is crucial to achieve outcomes. As Bruce Campbell writes:

The power of partnerships is vast, as are the increasingly urgent climate change adaptation and mitigation challenges faced by smallholder farmers. In Phase II we have to achieve even more – partnerships are central to that ambition.

Read the CCAFS 2016 Annual report