Monday, 7 June 2010

Climate Change Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) Launch Conference and Planning Workshop

4th -7th May. Nairobi, Kenya. The Challenge Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) is a new 10-year research initiative by the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) and the Earth System Science Partnership (ESSP) to facilitate new research on the interactions between climate change, agriculture, natural resource management and food security.

CCAFS will in late 2010, morph into the CGIAR mega programme seven (MP7) on climate change. Its initial focus regions are West Africa, East Africa and the Indo-Gangetic Plains.

It has four strategic thematic areas around which activities are designed:

  • Adaptation to progressive climate change
  • Adaptation through managing climate risk
  • Poverty alleviation through mitigation
  • Diagnosis and scenarios for making strategic choices
The workshop was to identify key research and development priorities and make inputs into implementation in the target regions of East Africa, West Africa and the Indo-Gangetic Plains.

Achim Steiner (UNEP) talked about implications of climate change for agriculture and underscored the need to break farmer dependency on seed companies and fertilizer suppliers. He further explained that promoting the ideology of more seeds, fertilizers and water as the sole means to achieving agricultural productivity will result in disaster. 

Lindiwe Sibanda discussed an Africa-wide policy on climate change adaptation and mitigation while David Radcliffe (European Commission) spoke about enhancing food security in the face of climate change and highlighted several global and European initiatives that support the same e.g. Global Initiative on climate Change, Global Initiative on Food Security, Global Climate Change Alliance, Food Security Thematic Programme, European Development Fund, Framework Programme 7.