CCC pushes for climate-smart agriculture

CCC pushes for climate-smart agriculture

MANILA — With members of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) intensifying efforts to ensure food security for people in the region and to address global climate change by drawing on sustainable productivity growth, Climate Change Commission (CCC) Secretary Robert Borje is pushing for climate-smart agriculture system that is innovative, science-based, and risk-centered climate policies in government that will redound to higher harvest yield.

In connection with this proposal, Climate Change Commissioner Albert Dela Cruz cited how climate change is affecting almost every aspect of the country’s agri-food system and stressed the necessity for the government to initiate measures that would strengthen our agriculture sector while at the same time establishing linkage and exchange with neighboring countries for cooperative efforts to address the impact of climate change on food production.

Commissioner Dela Cruz noted that although the Covid-19 pandemic has already slowed down, it should still be an aspect that should be taken into consideration especially as we are now experiencing supply chain disruptions that further exacerbate the country’s already fragile food economy.

He also added that current conflicts in different parts of the world, primarily in Ukraine, are further hampering food distribution and production throughout the globe.

“A recent report by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (UNFAO) highlighted that around 2.3 billion people lacked access to adequate food in 2021. This is almost 30 percent of the world’s population, showing to us severe food insecurity that has increased globally and in every region,” Dela Cruz said quoting a line from the said report.

In response to this, the United States, as the host of APEC 2023, has proposed the development of a common set of principles that can aid member economies in developing resilient agri-food systems and guide regional cooperation in a bid to drive regional conversations about sustainable development, economic security, environmental commitments and trade through the agricultural and food lens as APEC collectively moves towards enhancing regional food security.

Last year, agriculture and food ministers endorsed an Implementation Plan of the Food Security Roadmap Towards 2030 to navigate and coordinate actions, projects, and activities to achieve food security in the region. Currently, APEC members are discussing specific actions to implement the Food Security Roadmap Towards 2030 which covers six focus areas: digitalization and innovation, productivity, inclusivity, sustainability, public-private partnerships, and Smart goals.

In support, Dela Cruz disclosed that the CCC’s goal of immediately addressing the impact of climate change is quite simple and complex at the same time since the government must ensure that its people have enough food to eat, that the environment and the planet are safe and that farmers can stay in business despite the severe inflation and other financial and economic problems.

“We must look to data-driven and science-based policy decisions while focusing on leveraging innovation and science, technology, and new strategies to afford our farmers, fisher folk, forest rangers, and agricultural producers with the necessary tools that would empower them to be productive, resilient and effective,” the commissioner stressed.

(Amado Inigo/MTVN)

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