69 Tackling the challenges of climate change and food security: the role of farmers as stewards of the environment

Establishing effective multi-stakeholder partnerships with farmers in support of implementing the Paris Agreement to achieve food security and nutrition

Organizers

  • World Farmers’ Organisation (WFO)
  • Global Research Alliance (GRA)
  • International Fertilisers Industry Association (IFA)
  • Government of Canada
  • Government of New Zealand

Abstract

Climate change, agriculture and food security are highly interrelated, and food production is very sensitive to climate change. It will affect all four dimensions of food security –  namely availability,  accessibility, utilization and stability. Building resilience to its various negative effects and mitigating the risks posed to food security and nutrition, as well as to social stability and economic development, is crucial. Farmers, women and men, are the first nutrient providers and are directly affected by severe weather events. This is especially the case for small-scale farmers. However, farmers also represent part of the solution and by using climate-smart agriculture practices as well as installing renewable energy technologies and adaptation/mitigation techniques on their farms, they are already supporting the implementation of the Paris Agreement.

The side event will feature a discussion among different stakeholders on how to support farmers to build resilience to climate change and better adapt to it, while mitigating its effects, with positive results in food and nutrition security worldwide, taking a gender perspective. The partnership between the WFO and the GRA to strengthen the links between farmers and researchers will be highlighted, including the launch of a Fellowship Programme for young farmers and graduate  scientists.

Key speakers/presenters

  • H.E. Mr. Patrick John Rata, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of New Zealand to the UN Agencies, Rome (opening remarks)
  • Dr. Theo De Jager, President, World Farmers’ Organisation, Rome (opening remarks)
  • Dr. Marco Marzano de Marinis, Secretary General, World Farmers’ Organisation, Rome
  • (moderator)
  • Ms. Mi Nguyen, Deputy Permanent Representative of Canada to the UN Agencies and GACSA co-Chair, Rome
  • Mr. Matthew Hooper, Deputy Permanent Representative of New Zealand to the UN Agencies, Rome
  • Ms. Brenda Tlhabane, representative, African Farmers’ Association of South Africa AFASA,
  • Johannesburg, South Africa
  • Mr. Barrie Bain, Consultant to the International Fertilizer Association IFA, Tonbridge, United Kingdom

Summary

The side event featured a discussion among different stakeholders on how to support farmers to build resilience to climate change and better adapt to it, while mitigating its effects, with positive results on food and nutrition security worldwide.

Climate change, agriculture and food security are highly interrelated. Food production is very  sensitive to climate change, it exacerbates the risks of poverty and food insecurity. I n d e e d , i t affects all four dimensions of food security –  namely  availability, accessibility, utilization and stability. Building resilience to its various negative effects and mitigating the risks posed to food security and nutrition, as well as to social stability and economic development, is crucial. Farmers, women and men, are the first nutrient providers and are directly affected by severe weather events. This is especially the case for small-scale farmers. However, they also represent part of the solution and by using climate-smart agriculture practices, as well as installing renewable energy technologies and adaptation/mitigation techniques on their farms, they are already supporting the implementation of the Paris Agreement. Panellists focused on experiences and lessons learned from the efforts made in their specific sectors to prevent and reduce the impact of climate change on the farming sector, stressing the need for a holistic and multi- stakeholder approach to increase farmers’ resilience. The partnership between the WFO and the GRA to strengthen the links between farmers and researchers was also highlighted, in the framework of the launch of a Fellowship Program for young farmers and graduate scientists that was held in Rome the week after the CFS plenary.

Climate change is widely recognized as one of the most significant global challenges to be faced today. Agriculture is vulnerable to climate events, being at the same time a significant source of the greenhouse gases (GHGs) that are driving those changes.

Farmers have the potential and the expertise to be part of the solution, although they need to be supported by the other actors to overcome the challenges they face for example in accessing technology, innovation and resources.

Key outcomes/take away messages

Climate change is a cross-cutting issue that affects many sectors thus being connected to other global challenges.

Farmers’ communities are the most vulnerable to the effects of climate events.

A multi-stakeholder and holistic approach is essential to increase farmers’ resilience to climate change.

Side Event - 69 - Tackling the challenges of climate change and food security: the role of farmers as stewards of the environment