Climate Change


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Every farmer in the world will be affected by climate change.

Farmers do more than produce food. They also care for fields, pastures, and surrounding resources, including streams and forests. But in the 21st century, these activities are challenged as never before.

More people with greater incomes and climate change pose an unprecedented test to farmers, who must produce enough food to feed a growing population—expected to reach 9 billion by 2050—as they adapt their agricultural practices to an unpredictable climate marked by extreme weather events and changing seasons.

Farmers in developing countries are often also among the poorest. To grow their incomes while also being resilient to an uncertain future, poor and vulnerable farming communities need support. With the right tools to produce more food sustainably and access to more consistent sources of income to meet basic needs (food, clothing and shelter), they have a chance to thrive.

Reducing agricultural greenhouse gas emissions is an important piece of the climate change puzzle.

Agricultural emissions, direct and indirect, account for more than the energy and transport sectors combined, about one-third of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions globally. But smallholder farmers can take advantage of already-existing practices and technologies to make a major contribution to the mitigation of the sector’s GHG emissions. At the same time, they can benefit from the positive side effects of mitigation—including increased production and income.

Climate Change at IFPRI

Researchers at IFPRI are dedicated to helping farmers achieve the triple win of adapting to climate change, increasing crop yields, and mitigating greenhouse gas emissions.

IFPRI researchers use sophisticated climate, crop and economic models to simulate the impact of climate change on agricultural activities. Based on these scenarios, they identify technologies and devise policies that help smallholders to grow food, care for the earth and improve their livelihoods in the process.

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