Saturday, November 21, 2009

Don't ignore agriculture in climate talks, experts warn

Naomi Antony in Leading agriculturalists have warned that failure to include agriculture in next month's climate change summit in Copenhagen will have disastrous consequences on food security. More than 60 leading agricultural scientists from around the world signed a statement this week (18 November) in response to the almost total absence of agriculture from preliminary discussions leading up to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) summit in Copenhagen in December.

Climate change will create unprecedented conditions for farmers, who will have to cope with weather variability, temperature changes, shorter growing seasons, salt stress and new combinations of pests and diseases, said the statement. Without adaptation, yields will drop, creating food insecurity for billions, say researchers (see Billions face food shortages this century, warns study).

"No credible or effective agreement to address the challenges of climate change can ignore agriculture and the need for crop adaptation to ensure the world's future food supplies," said the statement. "We urge countries at the Copenhagen conference to give due attention to crop diversity conservation and use it as an essential element of the commitments they will make for climate change adaptation."

…"Just because [agriculture] has to adapt, does not mean it will," said signatory Gebisa Ejeta, the Ethiopian sorghum scientist who won this year's World Food Prize….

Some sorghum, shot by Daniel Georg Döhne, Wikimedia Commons, under the Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 License

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Good article with verry nice photo.