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Building Resilience for an Unpredictable Future: How Organic Agriculture Can Help Farmers Adapt to Climate Change







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    Support to the Promotion of Conservation Agriculture and Integrated Pest Management for Sustained Soil Fertility and Productivity - TCP/GHA/3701 2023
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    The degradation of soils, which are the foundation of agrifood systems, is alarming in sub Saharan Africa, which is already facing continued population growth that increases pressure on scarce natural resources Soil in Ghana is becoming low in nutrients, fragile and exposed to adverse natural and environmental pressures In addition, unsustainable farming systems on marginal lands and the overuse of chemical fertilizers and misuse of pesticides have led to declining soil fertility and contamination of the natural environment, rendering soils unproductive and negatively affecting livelihoods Smallholder agriculture, especially in the northern part of the country, is characterized by natural production with low access to productive assets, information and technical skills, low level of implementation of modern technologies and mechanization, small farm sizes, lack of productive infrastructures and rural finance institutions Moreover, subsistence farmers are the most exposed to climate change and price volatility Conservation Agriculture ( has proven to be a viable approach that contributes to improved and sustainable productivity, environmental protection and climate change adaptation It aims to improve soil productivity and conservation and includes practices that combine integrated management of soil, water and agricultural resources to boost food production Despite the potential benefits, implementation of CA, Integrated Pest Management ( and other Climate Smart Agriculture ( practices by smallholders remains low Previous experience with these types of interventions in Ghana showed a lack of evidence based interventions, know how on appropriate technologies to use and access to appropriate and locally designed tools and affordable equipment Smallholder households were identified as slow adopters of CA There is also the need to introduce the benefits of IPM to farmers to minimize the use of chemicals in foods As such, this project aimed to improve production systems and strengthen resilient livelihoods by using a climate smart approach as well as dealing with issues affecting agriculture management of natural resources The project targeted smallholder food crop farm families who are the most vulnerable with limited access to markets and credit The issues to be addressed were the degradation of natural resources due to inappropriate farming practices and population growth, improper use of agrochemicals in farming, a lack of organizational capacity to deal with climate change impacts at the community leveI inadequate access to resources and negligible or no access to information on good agricultural practices and climate change impacts.
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    Document
    Climate Change, Food Security and Insurance Systems for Family Farming
    Brazil case: Climate, income and price insurance programs.
    2016
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    Family Farming Insurance Disasters resulting from weather changes cause the greatest economic impacts on the region (70% of emergencies are weather-related). Annual costs of approximately 2.2% of the GDP (base year 2010) are estimated to face disasters, in lack of climate change adaptation actions. The global climate risk index estimated based on information from 1995 to 2014, indicates that 4 out of the 10 countries with the highest risk index are in Latin America and the Caribbean: Honduras, H aiti, Nicaragua and Guatemala. In the region, one third of the population lives in high risk zones due to exposure to geological and hydro-meteorological threats. Climate change is also increasing the dispersal area of plant and animal plagues and diseases, in addition to increasing the probability of outbreaks and intensified effects. Through the enactment of Law 5,969 of 1973, Brazil established the Agricultural and Livestock Activity Guarantee Program (PROAGRO) to protect farmers from rural loan obligations. In 2004, it created “PROAGRO Mais”, for producers associated to the National Program for the Strengthening of Family Farming (PRONAF). Currently, PROAGRO protects medium-sized farmers (PRONAMP), and PROAGRO Mais protects PRONAF beneficiaries. PROAGRO Mais guarantees, in cost operations, up to 80% of the expected gross income, covering financing and up to R$ 20 thousand of the estimated net income; and for investment operations, coverage limit is 95% of the expected gross inco me, deducting the coverage by cost operations. In cost operations, PRONAF beneficiary participation is mandatory, while in investment operations, it is optional. Harvest Guarantee In Latin America and the Caribbean, family farming is very important for the food security and nutrition of all population. Approximately 81% of agricultural endeavours correspond to family farmers and, depending on the country, they provide 27% to 67% of the food. Family farming generates 57% to 77% of agricultural j obs in the region, so its is a very important job-generation sector. To continue boosting food security and sustainable development, family farming has three important challenges: 1) to produce more assorted and nutritional foods, 2) to continue creating safer and more stable jobs, and 3) to favour the appropriate use of resources used in production. Harvest Guarantee is a program that supports family farmers below the poverty line, with emphasis on the Brazilian Semiarid Zone, where losses due to drought are frequent. It was established by Law 10,420, of April 10, 2002. Price Guarantee for Family Farming This is a Federal Government program that offers the family farmer with PRONAF loan, a protection against price reductions. Currently, 51 products have a guarantee price. Rural population in the region lives in an extremely precarious situation because the poorest population plus the population in economic vulnerability situation correspond to 80% of the total rural population. Many family farmers in this percentage have their livelihoods depending greatly on environmental factors and natural resources.
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    Economics of plant genetic resource management for adaptation to climate change
    A review of selected literature
    2012
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    Climate change is projected to change production conditions for agricultural producers globally. In the developing world, most of the projected changes will result in a reduction of agricultural productivity, with concomitant reductions in food security. Because agricultural production remains the main source of income for most rural communities, adaptation of the agricultural sector to the adverse effects of climate change will be imperative to protect and improve the livelihoods of the poor a nd to ensure food security. Adaptation will require farmers to make adjustments and employ a range of actions to enhance the resilience of local food systems that increase their net revenue by reducing the potential damage from climate change. Their capacity to make the required adjustments depends on the existence of policies and investments to support farmers’ access to materials and information, as well as to provide the proper economic incentives to stimulate changes. Responding to a changin g climate will also require changes in PGRFA management to address both immediate and slow onset changes. There are a range of adaptation options involving changes in PGRFA management, including changing crops, varieties and farming practices. These options are not mutually exclusive, and in fact are most often used on combinations (e.g. changing farming practices also involves changes in crops and varieties). Based on a wide range of literature review and our own empirical analysis, this paper argue that an enabling condition for PGRFA management for adaptation is the broadening of the genetic resource base farmers can access to enable them to change crops, varieties and farming systems to meet changing climate conditions.

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