Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Putting agriculture at the center of climate talks

Voice of America: This June in Brazil, delegates will mark the twentieth anniversary of what is commonly known as the Earth Summit. The United Nations Conference on Environment and Development took place in Rio de Janeiro in nineteen ninety-two.

One of the issues that the delegates plan to discuss in June at Rio+20 is the role of agriculture in climate change. A recent article written by a team of scientists says agriculture should be a top priority in climate change negotiations. It says there was some progress in this area, but not much, at the United Nations climate conference in December in Durban, South Africa.

The article "What Next for Agriculture After Durban?" appeared in the journal Science. Britain's chief scientific adviser, Sir John Beddington, led the international team that wrote it to try to influence policy makers. Molly Jahn from the University of Wisconsin-Madison was one of those authors.

MOLLY JAHN: "Well, agriculture is important, period, because of the imperative of food security. And we're falling short there in significant ways that have come to our attention, especially recently with the significant price shocks."

Prices on the world market have remained high since the food crisis of two thousand seven and two thousand eight. Professor Jahn says agriculture is a major producer of greenhouse gases blamed for trapping heat in the atmosphere. But agriculture also offers ways to lessen their effects with known and proven farming practices....

A corn field and truck or combine at sunset in Iowa, shot by Charles Knowles, Wikimedia Commons via Flickr, under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license

No comments: