Over 500 farmers representatives, scientists and development practitioners were out in force today at the third Agriculture and Rural Development Day (ARDD) in Durban. They are determined to put agriculture on the COP 17 agenda.
Their arguments are clear: Any serious effort to reduce green house gasses must include agriculture. And COP 17 is the chance for Africa to shape the agenda and establish an agriculture work program that is informed by science and covers adaptation and mitigation. And even for some `No agriculture, No deal'.
And today these voices are being heard.
Three years ago there was very little discussion around agriculture and climate change…this year agriculture events are everywhere around the COP.
Climate-smart agriculture – that’s agriculture that combines proven conservation agriculture techniques with the latest technologies like drought and flood tolerant crops, better weather forecasting and risk insurance for farmers – is gaining momentum.
People are paying attention because climate-smart agriculture delivers a triple win – increased productivity, increased adaptation and mitigation benefits.
Agriculture is being reimagined.
Africa stands to benefit most from climate-smart agriculture because of the vulnerability of rural people to climate change and the dependence of so much of the population on agriculture. And for Africa, adaptation is key.