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Mitigation of Climate Change in Agriculture (MICCA) Programme

The MICCA field projects on climate-smart agriculture

The pilot field projects of the MICCA Programme in Kenya and the United Republic of Tanzania have promoted Climate-Smart Agriculture (CSA) and have been integrated into ongoing development programmes. The objective of the pilot projects was to show that smallholder farmers can contribute to climate change mitigation while at the same time improve their livelihoods and increase their productivity. 

The project approach was to develop portfolios of potential CSA practices based on community-based participatory assessments and expert consultations; implement the selected practices using a variety of gender-sensitive extension methods, including farmer-to-farmer training; and evaluate their impacts on yield and food security, as well as their potential to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions on farms and throughout the landscape.

Farmers who participated in the MICCA pilot projects reported that the main benefits of CSA were higher yields, greater farm income and increased food availability. These results indicate that CSA can be a pathway for improving food security, alleviating poverty and building more resilient livelihoods. 

In addition, the overall results of the field projects show that smallholder farmers can be an effective part of the response to climate change, in making a meaningful contribution to reducing GHG emissions. In this regard, scenarios, modelling and measurements play an important role in evaluating and prioritizing adapted CSA practices, to facilitate their implementation and scaling up for farmers. 

Finally, by building research into ongoing development activities, the projects demonstrated that assessment of CSA practices can be undertaken quickly. The findings of the pilot projects can accordingly be used to prioritize efforts in other projects and programmes, and inform policy making. In fact, the findings of the MICCA pilot activities in Kenya and the United Republic of Tanzania were presented in national workshops, which allowed decision makers to familiarize themselves with the multiple benefits of the CSA approach, and to develop and adjust policies, plans and programmes to better foster CSA practices. Bringing sound up-to-date evidence into decision-making processes can thus help shape policies that support climate-smart transformation of the agriculture sectors.

For more information:

Family farming in the United Republic of Tanzania

Smallholder integrated crop-livestock system in Kenya

Climate-Smart Agriculture compendium initiative

The World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF), as part of the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture, and Food Security (CCAFS), with support from FAO, has developed a compendium on Climate-Smart Agriculture (CSA) practices. 

The compendium is a systematic review of the scientific basis of climate-smart agriculture. Its objective is to assess selected CSA practices in terms of their effectiveness on the three objectives of CSA and the constraints to their adoption and scale-up.