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Progressing towards climate resilient agriculture: top ten success stories from CCAFS in South Asia

Author: CCAFS
Author: Khatri-Chhetri, A.
Year: 2017
Abstract: In the last few decades, South Asia has made great strides in agriculture and food security. Despite this, the region has one-fourth of the world’s hungry people and forty percent of the world’s malnourished children and women. A large proportion of this population lives in regions that have widespread poverty and are very prone to climatic risks. With shrinking land and water resources, producing food sustainably to meet the needs of a growing population is a herculean task. Climate change is likely to compound these problems further. Millions of people in South Asia are vulnerable to depleting glaciers, increasing coastal erosion, frequent floods, droughts, and periods of higher temperatures associated with global climate change. There is now conclusive evidence that the climate is changing and its impacts are already being felt in South Asia. Numerous studies show that the productivity of crops, fish and livestock will decline in the absence of adaptation measures. If the Sustainable Development Goals of ending poverty, achieving food security and promoting sustainable agriculture are to be realised, climate change adaptation and mitigation interventions need to be implemented in earnest. There is, therefore, an urgent need to identify cost-effective, inclusive (with a focus on gender and socially marginalized groups), evidence-based, integrated and scalable solutions to enhance the adaptive capacity of vulnerable farming communities.Many stakeholders from the region which includes governments, researchers, civil society members as well as industry, have stepped up their efforts to develop strategies to reduce the vulnerability of agriculture to climatic risks. CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS), a strategic global partnership of CGIAR and Future Earth, has been active in South Asia since 2010.This booklet highlights 10 success stories, catalysed by CCAFS research and partnerships in South Asia, that are having an impact on building climate-smart agricultural (CSA) systems in the region. These systems are characterized by the achievement of enhanced food security and development goals through sustainably increased productivity, enhanced resilience and reduction of Green House Gas (GHG) emissions wherever possible. The success stories presented here, exhibit evidence on how agriculture can be transformed to become resilient and productive, thereby, protecting the farming systems from the hazards of climate change. One of the key highlights of the following success stories is the use of the Climate-Smart Village AR4D approach to identify models of CSA portfolios which have been brought to scale by several state governments in India (Story 1), by the Nepal government (Story 3), through the system of farmers’ cooperative in Gujarat, India, by utilizing solar power to minimize climatic risks in agriculture (Story 4), and by the deployment of precision nitrogen sensors (Story 10). In the area of agriculture insurance, CCAFS research has made significant contributions towards improving the risk transfer mechanism which has traditionally been marred by faulty designs. Consequently, research, leading to the designing and use of innovative models for determining triggers in weather index insurance has led to a win-win insurance product for farmers, industry and the government (Story 5). Further, the Nepal government is also being aided, in its efforts towards regular monitoring and assessment of its food security through CCAFS knowledge products (Story 8). In the domain of policy research and uptake, CCAFS research on interactive scenarios and policy analysis for agricultural development and food security has been used in the formulation of national development plans in Bangladesh (Story 7). Similar initiatives in India, have resulted in the latter becoming the first nation in the world to adopt a comprehensive agroforestry policy recognising the potential of agroforestry to reduce poverty, enhance productivity, while also making agricultural landscapes more resilient to the risks of climate change (Story 2). CCAFS has engaged in research and evidence building to help address the massive challenges of floods and droughts in the region. Using this research and field evidence on floodwater management, district level plans are being developed by the government of Uttar Pradesh, India (Story 6). Encouraged by the evidence built around adaptation and mitigation benefits of the Alternate Wetting and Drying (AWD) technology in rice cultivation, Bangladesh government is promoting this for wide-scale adoption in the country (Story 9). In addition to these ten success stories, this document also includes ten other successes and emerging stories that highlight some of the significant work being undertaken, some of which have established outcomes and some other, expected to lead to positive accomplishments in the near future. All of this work would not have been possible without the active participation and support of farmers and farmer groups; CGIAR centres active in the region; national agricultural research systems; local, regional and national governments; civil society members; industry partners and our numerous donors.
Format: PDF
Language: English
Publisher: CGIAR
Publisher: CCAFS
Copyright: CIMMYT manages Intellectual Assets as International Public Goods. The user is free to download, print, store and share this work. In case you want to translate or create any other derivative work and share or distribute such translation/derivative work, please contact indicating the work you want to use and the kind of use you intend; CIMMYT will contact you with the suitable license for that purpose.
Type: Brochure
Place of Publication: New Delhi, Ind.
Pages: 37 pages

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