How you can contribute to the mitigation of climate change? This is a strange question, especially if you were to ask a small farmer in Africa.
But if farmers could benefit from the money market through carbon mitigation activities in agriculture, and also make changes that support livelihoods, increased food production and greater resistance to weather, then they might want to participate in the development of low emissions.
So what is required to ensure that farmers receive financial compensation for mitigation project activities? And besides, what is needed to ensure that countries can plan and implement the development of low emissions related to agriculture?
The answers to these questions were the main topics of discussion at our recent side event “Mitigation and Agriculture: Towards the Development of Low Emissions”, attracting non-governmental organizations, policy makers and researchers, by throwing away a time of climate negotiations here in Bonn, Germany.
Several audience members noted that there is an inherent problem with current greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions data, which is necessary for the implementation and financing carbon projects scale up, for example.
Marja-Liisa Tapio Biström, the Organization for Food and Agriculture (FAO) of the United Nations, described the challenge: The data we have right now on greenhouse gases in relation to agriculture often lack the precision and quantity. Problems also arise because organizations depend on data that countries introduce themselves, and some countries lack the basic ability to monitor large areas, or have access to methods for identifying low-emission development!
“Another problem is the lack of data on emissions from tropical and subtropical areas,” Marja-Liisa continued, while urging research organizations such as the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) to take the challenge to get this information on the table.
However, some data exists, and is already being used to help decision makers. Marja-Liisa said, “we have to reflect on exactly how we want the data to be Because the more accurate -. Most expensive of this process will be” In the end, what we want is cost effective, easy to use tools that farmers , development practitioners and countries can use to implement and monitor activities for low emissions. you can begin to reap the benefits.
Get on top of the latest information on accounting of greenhouse gases: mitigation Moving Forward: Improve quantification of agricultural greenhouse gases
The needs are so different to the relevant stakeholders. Nicholas Berry of the University of Edinburgh said that some stakeholders may require GHG data to work on the carbon offset or based on financial performance. Other countries need for planning and evaluation. “We have to think, which is good enough with the tools we have and link them to the different needs that might be.”
Get more details and information about small farms is complex; the landscape is not only different but also very fragmented, with millions of small farms covering most of Africa. How it works in these conditions to measure emissions of greenhouse gases and carbon stocks? Many dimensions of the landscape can indeed be evaluated together, as evidenced in the SAMPLES approach presented by Eugenio Diaz-Pines from Karlsruhe Institute.
Another approach for accounting of greenhouse gases in sub-Saharan Africa is the head of the Small Agriculture Benefit Evaluation Mitigation (SHAMBA), which provides an application online interface that allows users to investigate the current and future environmental conditions and interventions land use. The aim is to support decision makers seeking options and opportunities for climate-smart agriculture.
Despite its sophistication, both SHAMBA and samples are only as good as the data available allows them to be.
These tools lead users to a step of identifying opportunities for low emissions in large landscapes. They can be used by non-specialists that try to make informed decisions. That in turn means that farmers can be more in control of the mitigation potential in its own plot of land.
Countries may also use tools like these to get the data and correct information about your soil and landscape. When Tennigkeit Timm was greeted on stage by President James KInyangi Leader Eastern Africa Program CCAFS, he started to talk about the National Mitigation Plans (NAMAs) preparations are currently being developed.
CCAFS-FAO joint review on the NAMA process: countries achieve food security and reduce climate costs of agriculture
At this time, 40 percent of submissions National Appropriate Mitigation Actions (NAMAs) includes agricultural activities. “The synergies with other development goals are you considered in all plans for agricultural mitigation,” he told members of the audience “, which includes increasing food security, reducing deforestation, pollution reduced water and greater adaptation to climate change and more. ”
This shows that many developing countries are recognizing the strategies of low emissions development as a promising way to sustainable growth, while protecting its natural capital, but still need more data and knowledge.
To further improve the tool and the availability of data, the panel said, we need financial support, investment in manufacturing tools available and easy to use and improve data quality.