Posted on :Tuesday , 4th October 2022
A recent climate summit was held in Addis Abeba, Ethiopia, thanks to the efforts of the Consortium for Climate Change Ethiopia (CCC-E) and the Alliance for Food Sovereignty in Africa (AFSA).
To discuss and establish a distinct African perspective for the next United Nations Climate Change Conferences, over 150 climate actors from 32 African countries, including small-scale food producers, youth, women, academics, environmentalists, and scientists, gathered.
They discussed many topics in order to evaluate best practises and policy solutions to combat climate disasters, restore biodiversity, revive cultural variety, enhance resilience, and reform food systems throughout the continent in order to create a roadmap for doing so.
More than three decades have passed since the world's shifting climate attracted public notice, with the early 1980s' abrupt rise in the global temperature serving as the tipping point. It's true that a lot of work has been done to present a scientific perspective on climate change, its effects, and workable mitigation and adaptation strategies.
Agroecology is the best path ahead for the continent to be resilient and attain its food sovereignty, according to Million Belay (PhD), AFSA's General Coordinator.
One of the panellists, Joshua Aijuke from PELUM-Uganda, claimed that while Climate Smart Agriculture (CSA) technologies are being marketed as alternative solutions to the matter, they are actually intensifying the use of agrochemicals like herbicides, which will have an impact on the local biodiversity.
Agroecology is the application of ecological concepts and principles to farming, whereas ecology is the study of relationships that plants, animals, and people have with their environment and the balance between these relationships.
It is the right strategy to use for minimizing the impact of farming on wildlife and using nature to do labor-intensive tasks like crop pollination and pest control. Additionally, it encourages farming methods that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, recycle resources, and give priority to local supply chains.
Planting fruit, nut, or timber trees on land typically used to grow cereal crops can provide another source of income for farmers and also protect soils from erosion as the trees' deep roots help create a healthy soil structure. Grazing farm animals under trees gives them shelter and fodder while their manure enriches the soil.
To restructure the agri-food system, increase resilience, and help small-scale farmers, pastoralists, and fishermen adapt to climate change, agroecology should be prioritised. Agroecology should be discussed during climate talks at the UNFCCC.
With the development of the strategy, Million Belay further urged each nation's stakeholders, African civil society, and climate actors to work together to support agroecology and represent Africa's viewpoint at the Cop27 in Egypt.
Getahun Garedew (PhD), Director General, Ethiopian Environmental Protection Authority, informed the audience in his closing remarks at the AFSA Climate Convening of the nation's commitment to a just climate solution through agroecology and committed to further the cause at international conferences.