Economic and Policy Analysis of Climate Change


Progress towards sustainable agriculture – Drivers of change


The Progress towards Sustainable Agriculture initiative (PROSA) is a framework that seeks to complement ongoing efforts on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and particularly indicator 2.4.1, to support country-level assessments using data already available at the national level. Making agriculture more sustainable – productive, environmentally friendly, resilient and profitable is fundamental, as agriculture remains the main source of livelihood for the majority of the world’s poor and hungry. The pathway towards sustainable agriculture must ensure increasing output, but also make [...]

Evidence and policy options on migration, cash crop production and deforestation in Uganda

Policy briefs

This policy brief, prepared by the FAO Economic and Policy Analysis of Climate Change (EPIC), aims to analyse the relationships and policy options in regard to migration, cash crops and deforestation in Uganda. In particular, it shows that: – the expansion of cash crop activities significantly drives deforestation in Uganda; - migrants who produce cash crops contribute to deforestation significantly more than locals; - improving coordination between interventions on forests, agriculture and land use, and securing land rights is crucial in order to [...]

Harvesting trees to harvest cash crops: The role of internal migrants in forest land conversion in Uganda

Working papers

In this work, we merge socio-economic data with data on deforestation to explore the interrelationship between rural migration, the development of commercial agricultural sector, and forest cover loss. Specifically we test the role of cash crop producers and inter-district migrants on the tree loss in the parish of residence, while controlling for several other household-level and parish-level contributing factors of deforestation, including population density, proximity to markets and protected areas. Also, we investigate the agricultural channel, specifically producing cash crops, [...]

Leveraging social protection to advance climate-smart agriculture: An empirical analysis of the impacts of Malawi’s Social Action Fund (MASAF) on farmers’ adoption decisions and welfare outcomes

Journal articles

This article assesses the interactions between participation in Malawi’s largest public works programme, the Malawi Social Action Fund (MASAF), and three widely promoted climate smart agriculture (CSA) practices. Drawing on three waves of national panel household survey data, we find that participation in MASAF significantly increases the probability that farm households adopt the resource intensive CSA practices of building soil water conservation structures and applying organic fertilizers. Moreover, participation in MASAF contributes to a sustained adoption of these practices over [...]

Assessing the profitability and feasibility of climate-smart agriculture investment in Southern Malawi

Working papers

This working paper analyses the financial cost and benefit of adopting two different bundles of climate-smart agriculture (CSA) practices, which are tailored for the diverse conditions that prevail in southern Malawi. The results show the integration of CSA practices, including soil conservation, agroforestry, and livestock diversification, into conventional maize-legume and maize monocrop systems is profitable for farmers. Moreover, the profitability of these systems increases under extreme weather conditions that occur with increasing frequency in the region. However, the upfront costs [...]

Adapting to High Temperatures: Effect of Farm Practices and Their Adoption Duration on Total Value of Crop Production in Uganda

Journal articles

In this article, we use spatially granular climate data merged with four waves of household survey data in Uganda to examine empirically the relationships among high temperatures, total value of crop production, and the adoption and adoption duration of two sustainable agricultural practices (organic fertilizer adoption and maize–legume intercropping). We do this using a fixed-effect model with instrumental variables to address potential endogeneity issues. Our findings indicate that the adoption of these practices has a positive effect on the total [...]

Public expenditure analysis for climate change adaptation and mitigation in the agricultural sector – A case study of Uganda

Working papers

This paper presents a methodology for public expenditure review and analysis for climate change adaptation and mitigation in the agricultural sector. It outlines the basic methodological concepts, including the classification of public expenditures in the context of their links to climate change adaptation and mitigation. It also illustrates how such analysis can usefully contribute to policy decision making to better achieve the climate change adaptation and mitigation goals using the case study of Uganda. The proposed classification allows for analysing [...]

Measuring progress towards sustainable agriculture

Technical papers

This paper presents a new methodological approach aimed at measuring progress towards sustainable agriculture in countries and across agri-food systems typologies, by measuring socio-economic and environmental dimensions with available national statistics, with sixteen indicators defined and constructed from FAOSTAT data. A trend analysis is carried out at country level over the time series 1961-2018, with country results aggregated by four agri-food systems typologies: traditional; land-intensive and capital-intensive mixed systems; and modern food systems. The analysis provides a novel framework for [...]

Leveraging social protection to advance climate-smart agriculture: evidence from Malawi

Working papers

In many developing countries the adoption of climate sustainable practices is hindered by resource and risk barriers. This paper assesses the interactions between participation in Malawi’s largest public works programme, the Malawi Social Action Fund (MASAF), and three widely promoted climate-smart agriculture (CSA) practices. The underlying hypotheses to be tested are: (a) that participation in the MASAF programme reduce both the budget and the risk constraints to the adoption of sustainable management practices; and (b) the joint treatment effect of [...]

Reducing agriculture-led forest loss in Viet Nam: the role of land use constraints

Policy briefs

This brief reviews some of the main land use contraints to reducing agriculture-led forest loss in Viet Nam. We find that agricultural land use constraints increase agriculture-driven pressure on forests. Farmers producing high-value crops have more incentives to deforest, and this increase when operating in areas with land use constrains. Removing land use constraints, repurposing agricultural support and reinforcing environmental regulations would improve agricultural productivity, sustainability and climate resilience, while reducing pressure on forests. The findings in this brief have [...]
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