17 December 2008: The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) is helping the Bangladesh Meteorological Department to upgrade and strengthen its network of agrometeorological observatories, as announced at the opening of a national seminar on agrometeorology taking place in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Other international organizations such as the World Bank, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization and the World Food Programme are also participating in the seminar to discuss the country's need for improved weather and climate data in support of agriculture.
17 November 2008: The UN World Food Programme (WFP) and the
International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), supported by the
Melinda and Bill Gates Foundation, are launching a programme to increase access
by farmers in developing countries to weather-indexed insurance schemes.
21 October 2008: The UN Development Programme (UNDP), UN
Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Food Programme (WFP) have submitted
reports on progress in the implementation of Article 4, paragraphs 8 and 9, of
the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and of decision 1/CP.10
to the UNFCCC Subsidiary Body for Implementation, which will hold its 29th
session in Poznan, Poland, from 1-10 December 2008.
16 October 2008: On World Food Day (WFD), the heads of UN agencies called attention to the ongoing crisis of hunger and its interrelations with climate change and rising fuel prices.
16 October 2008: World Food Day 2008 (WFD), which was celebrated on 16 October, was marked by events around the world addressing the theme “World Food Security: the Challenges of Climate Change and Bioenergy.” The main ceremony was held at UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) headquarters in Rome, Italy, including a statement by FAO Director-General Jacques Diouf (see related story), a message from Pope Benedict XVI, and a keynote speech by Egypt's First Lady Suzanne Mubarak.
October 2008: The International Food Policy Research Institute (IFRPI) has published three essays addressing critical questions regarding policy responses to the current food crisis. The essays by Joachim von Braun, IFPRI Director General, Josette Sheeran, Executive Director of the UN World Food Programme (WFP), and Namanga Ngongi, President of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), point to the dangers and pitfalls of misguided policies, but also to the potential opportunities for responding in a way that prevents future crises and ensures food security in the long term. In addition to the most pressing questions of delivering immediate relief to populations affected by hunger and the strategic issues of the long-term stabilization of food production and food markets, the essays also address impacts of current biofuel policies and climate change on agriculture.
15 September 2008: Leaders of the Rome-based UN agencies,
the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO), World Food Programme
(WFP) and International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), together with
the World Bank, presented a common statement to the European Parliament's
Development Committee, urging it to take the lead in providing assistance to
help farmers cope with surging food and commodity prices.
17 July 2008: The UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) concluded
its three-day Humanitarian Affairs Segment by convening a panel discussion on “Humanitarian
challenges related to global food aid, including enhancing international
efforts and cooperation in this field,” chaired by
Council Vice-President Park In-kook (Republic of Korea) and moderated by John Holmes, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs.
July 2008: In a joint statement, the heads of the Food and Agriculture
Organization of the UN (FAO), the International Fund for Agricultural
Development (IFAD) and the World Food Programme (WFP) urged G8 leaders to
“strike a decisive blow in the fight against hunger and poverty” by reversing
the decline in agricultural investment, which has been one of the underlying
causes of the current world food crisis.”
June 2008: The WFP Executive Board has adopted a new four-year strategic plan to address hunger needs arising from recent
food price increases and shortages, as well as to fight hunger more strategically.