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Setting the Copenhagen agenda

Apr 16, 2009

International Food Policy Research Institute releases its first series Agriculture and Climate Change: An Agenda for Negotiation in Copenhagen. The document looks into funding opportunities that would help poor farmers in undertaking mitigation and adaptation activities.

Agriculture and Climate Change: An Agenda for Negotiation in Copenhagen

Publisher: IFPRI, March 2009

Agriculture and climate change share a two-way causal relation. Today agriculture contributes about 14% of annual greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and land-use change, including forest loss, contributes another 19%. The relative contributions differ dramatically by region. The developing world accounts for about 50% of agricultural emissions and 80% of land-use change and forestry emissions.

On the other hand climate change will have dramatic consequences for agriculture. Developing economies and the poorest of the poor most likely will be hardest hit.

This document focuses on how agriculture can help mitigate greenhouse gas emissions. The best ways to dissuade poor people from cutting down trees and converting other lands to unsustainable agricultural practices and to encourage them to adopt technologies and management strategies that mitigate carbon, methane, and nitrous oxide emissions?

Few approaches have been highlighted in the paper:

  • Fund cost-effective mitigation in agriculture
  • Research on promising technologies and management systems
  • Fund low-cost systems for monitoring agricultural mitigation
  • Allow innovative payment mechanisms
  • Support novel institutions for agricultural mitigation
  • To recognise the connection between pro-poor development policies for sustainable growth and sound climate change policies
  • Recognise and support synergies between adaptation and mitigation

The goal is to find and fund the most cost-effective ways to help the poor adapt to the changes, a daunting task because of uncertainty of the possible changes, their geographic distribution, and the long lead times needed to implement adaptation efforts.

Source : IFPRI
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