The natural resources base and ecosystems must be managed sustainably to meet people’s food requirements and other environmental, social and economic needs. Climate change, increased water scarcity and conflicts over access to resources all pose challenges to environmental sustainability and food security. In addition, hunger and poverty often compel the poor to over-exploit the resources on which their own livelihoods depend.
FAO supports sustainable natural resource management including agricultural water use efficiency; land and soil productivity; sustainable forest management, aquaculture and inland fisheries; integrated crop and livestock systems; pesticide management and watershed management. FAO also supports the major environmental conventions, including the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. FAO provides technical and policy advice to address the main threats to the natural resource base, which include land degradation, water scarcity, deforestation, overgrazing, over exploitation of marine resources, increased green house gas emissions and loss of genetic resources and biological diversity. FAO carries out significant work on the links between food security and bioenergy development.