The longer World waits to address climate change, the higher the cost
In September, the world’s top scientists said the human influence on climate was clear. Last month, they warned of increased risks of a rapidly warming planet to our economies, environment, food supply, and global security. Today, the latest report from the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) describes what we need to do about it.
The report focused on mitigation, says that global greenhouse gas emissions were rising faster in the last decade than in the previously three, despite reduction efforts. Without additional mitigation efforts, we could see a temperature rise of 3.7 to 4.8 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial times by the end of this century. The IPCC says we can still limit that increase to 2 degrees, but that will require substantial technological, economic, institutional, and behavioral change.
Let’s translate the numbers. For every degree rise, that equates to more risk, especially for the poor and most vulnerable.
Source: Rachel Kyte.
Agroforestry increases carbon storage and can enhance agricultural productivity, so it could be a win-win solution to the difficult choice between reforestation and agricultural land use in Africa, says scientists from the World Agroforestry Centre.
In most parts of Africa, climate change mitigation to date has focused on reforestation and forest protection. But this is in conflict with the need to expand agricultural production in Africa to feed the continent’s growing population.
Agroforestry however, can achieve mitigation and increase production but also help farmers adapt to the impacts of climate change.
“For example, a farm with trees will suffer less to the impacts of climate change because it will absorb some of these impacts, so agroforestry is a good response to develop resilience of agrosystems to the challenges brought about by climate change,” says Cheikh Mbow, Senior Scientist, Climate Change and Development at the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) and lead author of the article.
Mbow and co-authors suggest that agroforestry should attract more attention in global agendas on climate change mitigation because of its positive social and environmental impacts. Increasing the adoption of agroforestry requires support for smallholder farmers through building robust extension services.