Agricultural Development Economics


Food security and agricultural mitigation in developing countries: Options for capturing synergies
Publication date
Two key challenges facing humanity today stem from changes within global food and climate systems. The 2008 food price crisis and global warming have brought food security and climate change to the top of the international agenda. Agriculture plays a significant role in both and these two challenges must be addressed together, rather than in isolation from each other. Farmers will need to feed a projected population of 9.1 billion in 2050. Meeting this demand together with challenges from climate change, bioenergy and land degradation puts enormous pressure on the agricultural sector to provide food, feed and fibre as well as income, employment and other essential ecosystem services. Making changes to agricultural production systems, particularly amongst smallholders, is a key means of meeting this objective. Such changes also have implications for adaptation and mitigation in the agricultural sector. The paper explores potential synergies between food security, adaptation and climate change mitigation from land-based agricultural practices in developing countries, which could help to generate the multiple benefits needed to address the multiple demands placed on agriculture. It indicates promising mitigation options with synergies, options that involve trade-offs, possible options for required financing, and possible elements in designing country implementation processes.