Commission explores threats of climate change to food security

Climate & Natural resources,Food Security,Knowledge brokering14 Mar 2011Evert-jan Quak

An agriculture research consortium (Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security; Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research; Earth System Science Partnership; Global Donor Platform for Rural Development) announced on 11 March, 2010 the creation of a new Commission on Sustainable Agriculture and Climate Change.

Chaired by the United Kingdom’s Chief Scientific Advisor, Professor Sir John Beddington, (and head of the Foresight Report: ‘The Future of Food and Farming’) the Commission will, in the next ten months, seek to build international consensus on a clear set of policy actions to help global agriculture adapt to climate change, achieve food security and reduce poverty and greenhouse gas emissions.

The press release stated, ‘There is a rich body of scientific evidence for sustainable agriculture approaches that can increase production of food, fibre and fuel, help decrease poverty and benefit the environment, but agreement is needed on how best to put these approaches into action at scale. Evidence also shows that climate change, with population growth and pressures on natural resources, is set to produce food shortages and biodiversity loss worldwide unless action is taken now.’

The Commission brings together senior natural and social scientists working in agriculture, climate, food and nutrition, economics, and natural resources from Australia, Brazil, Bangladesh, China, Ethiopia, France, Kenya, India, Mexico, South Africa, the United Kingdom, the United States and Vietnam.

The Commission has been set up by the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security program (CCAFS) – a 10-year effort launched by the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) and the Earth System Science Partnership (ESSP) – with support from the Global Donor Platform for Rural Development.

The Commission will synthesize existing research to clearly articulate scientific findings on the potential impact of climate change on food security globally and regionally, after which it will produce a set of specific policy actions for dealing with these challenges.

The Commission’s findings will be primarily directed to international policy, including the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Rio+20 Earth Summit, and the Group of 20 (G20) industrialized and developing countries.

Full list of Commissioners

Biographical details can be seen here.

Professor Sir John Beddington, CMG FRS Chief Scientist, Government Office for Science, United Kingdom (Commission Chair)

  • Dr Mohammed Asaduzzaman, Research Director, Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies, Bangladesh
  • Dr Adrian Fernández Bremauntz, Senior Consultant, ClimateWorks Foundation, Mexico
  • Dr Megan Clark, FTSE, GAICD, Chief Executive Officer, Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Australia
  • Dr Marion Guillou, President, Institut Scientifique de Recherche Agronomique (INRA), France
  • Professor Molly Jahn, Laboratory of Genetics and Department of Agronomy and Special Advisor to the Chancellor and Provost for Sustainability Sciences, the University of Madison-Wisconsin, USA
  • Professor Lin Erda, Director of the Research Centre of Agriculture and Climate Change, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, China
  • Professor Tekalign Mamo, State Minister and Minister’s Advisor, Ministry of Agriculture, Ethiopia
  • Dr Nguyen Van Bo, President, Vietnam Academy of Agricultural Science, Vietnam
  • Dr Carlos A Nobre, Director of the Center for Earth System Science, National Institute for Space Research (INPE), Brazil
  • Professor Bob Scholes, Fellow, Natural Resources and the Environment, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), South Africa
  • Dr Rita Sharma, Secretary, National Advisory Council (Prime Minister’s Office), India
  • Professor Judi Wakhungu, Executive Director, African Center for Technology Studies (ACTS), Kenya.