Recovery, Renewal, Resilience

Lessons for Resilience

Consider how to promote conservation agriculture to mitigate the impacts of climate change
Environmental health

COVID-19 has resulted in food shortages in certain parts of the world due to disrupted supply chains. The compounding impacts of poor harvests as a result of climate change requires the adoption of new farming techniques to protect the environment and lives and livelihoods. Conservation agriculture promotes minimal soil disturbance, crop diversification and the use of organic fertilizer to conserve and improve the soil, and makes more efficient use of natural resources. It is therefore climate-smart from an adaptation as well as mitigation viewpoint. Consider:

  • Introducing environmentally friendly legislation and incentives. In the UK, the Agriculture Bill is reforming farming to provide subsidies not simply for cultivating land (which is the current EU approach) but for delivering "public goods" e.g. sequestering carbon in trees or soil, enhancing habitat with pollinator-friendly flowers
  • Moving beyond a model of short-term farming subsidies e.g. through stronger legislative commitments to long term funding, domestic environmental and animal welfare standards, and safeguards on import standards
  • How to promote the benefits of conservation agriculture for farmers including financial savings that can be made due to less use of machinery, labour and pesticides
  • Using digital technologies to disseminate important information on how to limit post-harvest losses, and improve better access markets and financial services
  • Encouraging the public to continue to 'buy local' during the pandemic (e.g. through farms practicing conservation agriculture), as this supports local, sustainable food supply chains
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