COP21: Urgent Government Action Needed to Make Agriculture Climate-Smart and Nutrition-Smart

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Only 24 of the 156 Parties that have submitted INDCs ahead of COP21 refer to nutrition, and even fewer note the links between nutrition policies and climate action.

The Parties at COP 21 need to show stronger commitment to nutrition security to see progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals. The Global Panel on Agriculture and Food Systems for Nutrition believes that solutions are needed to address climate change, agriculture, and food goals simultaneously. To achieve these goals, the Panel has six policy recommendations:

  • Include diet quality goals in adaptation targets proposed for climate action.
  • Diversify agricultural investments, factoring in the local realities of ecological sustainability.
  • Support greater food system efficiency so that outputs per unit of water, energy, land, and other inputs are optimised and the footprint of agriculture and non-farm activities are better managed to meet both food demand and higher-quality diets.
  • Integrate measures to improve climate change resilience and the nutritional value of crop and livestock products along the value chain, from production to marketing.
  • Protect the diet quality of the poor in the face of supply shocks and growing food demand.
  • Promote the generation and use of rigorous evidence on appropriate investments along food value-chains, which are resilient to climate change and also deliver positive dietary outcomes and support improved nutrition.

“Climate change is creating the conditions in which we have to find a way to provide nutrition to an expanding global population.This means that we need to come together as an agriculture, nutrition and public health community to find solutions to what is becoming a growing problem” said Rachel Kyte, Global Panel member and World Bank Climate Change Envoy.

Climate change is expected to push down global farm output by 2% per decade between now and 2050. Demand for food is expected to rise substantially during that same period.  All of us depend on the nutritious food produced by millions of farmers for our health and wellbeing. Realising nutrition outcomes from effective climate smart agriculture will be essential.

The convening of COP21 provides an important opportunity for the Global Panel to discuss the policies needed to achieve food and nutrition security under climate change. For this reason, a side event on Climate-Smart Food Systems for Enhanced Nutrition is scheduled at the Africa Pavilion on Saturday 5 Dec at 10.00am.

Rachel Kyte, Sir john Beddington and President John A. Kufuor have offered their availability for comments and interviews to accompany the statement.

Full Global Panel Statement

Policy recommendations for climate-smart policies

Join our side event at COP21