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Climate Smart Agriculture



In order to fulfill the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement, climate-smart agriculture (CSA) is a method that aids in directing measures to convert agri-food systems toward environmentally friendly and climate-resilient practices. According to the IPCC's special report, global warming, shifting precipitation patterns, and an increase in the frequency of extreme events have all had an impact on food security. These factors have decreased crop yields, decreased animal growth rates, and decreased livestock productivity in developing countries.


The climate-smart agriculture seeks to:


  • Enhance farmer productivity and, consequently, livelihoods;

  • increase farm resilience to current and impending climate impacts; and,

  • to the extent practical, reduce greenhouse gas emissions related to food production.


The requirement for agricultural land, rangeland for cattle, fertilisers, and genetically engineered crops will rise exponentially as the world population is expected to reach 9.1 billion by 2050. The condition of the global environment will be impacted by this growth. Over 2 billion adults are overweight or obese, 800 million people are undernourished, and 800 million people are deficient in micronutrients. Overall, there hasn't been much progress done in ensuring that everyone has access to sufficient, wholesome food. The largest barriers to advancement, particularly in areas with high levels of inequality, include conflict, climate change, catastrophic weather occurrences, and economic slowdowns. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 epidemic, the gap is growing.


By 2050, there won't be enough food to feed 10 billion people. To feed a burgeoning global population, the per capita food supply has increased by more than 30% since 1961. Nevertheless, despite this exponential growth, the issue of hunger is still not resolved by existing food production.


The health of the world is also being threatened by modern agricultural methods. This industry is responsible for 16–27% of the world's greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, which also harm the land, freshwater resources, and biodiversity. In India, agriculture and livestock are responsible for 18% of the country's greenhouse gas emissions (7 percent of global emissions). 26 percent of the world's greenhouse gas emissions are attributed to food, while 31 percent of those emissions are attributable to livestock (meat, dairy, and eggs) and fisheries. Methane is a greenhouse gas that is created during grazing, fermentation, and liquid manure management. Nitrous oxide is one of the greenhouse gases produced during crop production and makes for 27% of all food emissions. Including harvesting, food processing, packaging, and transportation, the food supply chain is responsible for 18% of all greenhouse gas emissions.


With between 19 and 29 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions currently coming from agriculture, it is a significant driver of climate change. Sustainable agriculture, often known as climate-smart agriculture (CSA), refers to integrated strategies that incorporate climate-friendly methods into the raising of animals and crops. It promotes carbon sequestration or lowers greenhouse gas emissions. The CSA seeks to provide food security for all people while also taking into account the world's expanding population.


Despite having comparatively less money, R&D, and capital, the food systems of nations in the Global South are often more susceptible to the dangers of climate change. The majority of developing nations have weak institutional frameworks to address rural challenges, weak negotiating positions for smallholder farmers, and inadequate access to infrastructure. This fundamentally prevents the expansion of agriculture in the context of the impending climate disaster.


In order to adapt to climate change, one must be resilient to both water shortages from droughts and surpluses from floods and strong rains. Integrated farming systems are another tactic to boost resistance to climate change. This indicates that farms should be built to integrate several forms of production, such as crops and cattle, animal husbandry and forestry, and other combinations, rather than being restricted to a single form.


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