• Nov 05, 2021 . 2 min Read
  • World leaders tasked to finance Climate targets

According to Kalibata, the recent UN Food Systems Summit inspired the launch of national pathways and global coalitions to champion the rights and needs of grassroots producers.
Prossy Nandudu
Journalist @New Vision

CLIMATE | CHANGE | DR KALIBATA

World leaders meeting in Glasgow for the COP26 gathering have been called on to finance their country’s climate targets also known as National Determined Contributions (NDCS) to help farmers cope with new and extreme weather conditions.

The reason is that the smallholder farmers who produce more often depend on rain-fed agriculture and forests to make a living. However, these are faced with the task of coping with the increasingly severe impacts of climate change.

The call was made by Dr Agnes Kalibata, the Special Envoy of the UN Secretary-General for the UN Food Systems Summit.

According to Kalibata, the recent UN Food Systems Summit inspired the launch of national pathways and global coalitions to champion the rights and needs of grassroots producers, which should be reflected in every country’s climate targets.

She added that through each country’s climate plans, countries should help and train farmers to adapt food systems that work with the changing natural environment, rather than work against it.

She gave an example of East Africa, where 65% of the region is faced with a higher risk of drought especially in countries such as Djibouti, Eritrea, parts of Ethiopia and Tanzania, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan and Sudan.

Drought has been coupled with land degradation already affecting 65 per cent of Africa’s land area, of which the continent loses about four million hectares of forest annually.

She also proposed that for African smallholder farmers to thrive, they will need tools and techniques like agroecology to help them continue with the production of food amidst the scarce natural resources.

Other technologies being promoted by the Coalition for the Transformation of Food Systems is through Agroecology.

Appeal for help

To further support especially African countries cope with the changing climate, she appealed to advanced economies to support the cause by channelling climate finance for developing countries to deal with loss and damage, advance agroecology research and Regenerative practices and facilitate local innovations.

Other ways through which climate change challenges can be handled by governments is through harnessing the benefits of knowledge from among Indigenous Peoples, who manage a quarter of the Earth’s surface, including rainforests, but preserve 80 per cent of the remaining biodiversity.

COP26, the major international climate summit, is being hosted in Glasgow from November 1 -12, 2021. The summit is widely considered to be a critical moment in the global efforts to tackle climate change and achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

COP26 is seen by governments, regulators, and businesses as a moment for countries and businesses to demonstrate how they are responding to the new levels of urgency, expectation and action on climate change.

Climate change is a global problem, but despite only contributing 4% of total emissions, Africa is experiencing a disproportionate level of impact. Extreme weather events are increasing across the continent. Climate change could wipe out 15% of Africa’s GDP by 2030.

This could pull an additional 100 million people into extreme poverty by the end of the decade. If no action is taken, climate impacts will lead to overall crop yield reductions of up to 30% by 2050, while extreme weather events will result in higher post-harvest quality and quantity losses.

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