Agriculture & Food Security

IFAD Discusses Opportunities and Risks of Biotechnologies [viewed]

International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD)

21 January 2009: Ides Willebois, on behalf of Leonard Båge, President of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), delivered a statement to the German Bundestag outlining IFAD's perspective on the risks and opportunities of agro-biotechnology and other agricultural technologies.

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UNDESA to Release WESS 2009 on Climate Change and Development [viewed]

January 2009: The UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA) will launch the World Economic and Social Survey 2009-Climate Change and Development (WESS 2009) around mid-2009, to be available to the UNFCCC process, in particular, the Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen in December 2009.

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FAO and IWMI Launch Asia Pacific Water Forum's Knowledge Hub on Irrigation Service Reform [viewed]

22 January 2009: The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific, and the International Water Management Institute (IWMI) launched the Asia Pacific Water Forum's Knowledge Hub for Irrigation Service Reform during a workshop held in Bangkok, Thailand, from 19- 21 January 2009. The Knowledge Hub will work towards the modernization of irrigation in the region.

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UN Secretary-General on President Obama's Inauguration: Towards a New Era of Strong Partnership [viewed]

21 January 2009: In a statement issued in New York, US, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon congratulated Barack Obama on his inauguration as US President. He underlined that, increasingly, the challenges faced by the community of nations are global in scope and require collective responses, citing, inter alia, climate change, the food and energy crises, and human development.

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World Water Forum Prepcom Highlights Impacts of Climate Change on Water Scarcity [viewed]

Agriculture is by far the biggest water user

21 January 2009: The Third Preparatory Committee (PrepCom) meeting of the Ministerial Process of the Fifth World Water Forum, hosted by the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and co-organized by the World Water Council, is being held at UN Food and Agriculture (FAO) headquarters in Rome, Italy, from 21-23 January 2008. The meeting has gathered delegates from over 60 countries to continue negotiations on a global plan of action for adapting to global changes that affect the management of freshwater resources.

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UN Prepares for High-Level Meeting on Food Security for All [viewed]

David Nabarro, coordinator of the Secretary-General's High-Level Task Force on the Global Food Security Crisis

19 January 2009: UN officials and representatives of international agencies belonging to the High-Level Task Force on the Global Food Security Crisis, ministers and several Heads of State will convene from 26-27 January 2009, in Madrid, Spain, for a High-Level Meeting on Food Security for All. Hosted by the Spanish Government, the meeting will review progress since the “High-Level Conference on World Food Security: The Challenges of Climate Change and Bioenergy,” held in June 2008, during which 181 States and the European Community pledged to alleviate the suffering caused by soaring food prices, stimulate agricultural development and food production, and address obstacles to food access.

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Climate Change, Energy and Food Security UNU Website Wins Best Design Award [viewed]

UN University Internet blogging site wins industry acclaim with best design award

16 January 2009: The UN University (UNU) “World 2.0” blog has been awarded the prize for the best designed site by the world's largest Internet blog competition.

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IFPRI Releases Paper on Climate Variability and Maize Yield in South Africa [viewed]

December 2008: The International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) has released a discussion paper entitled “Climate Variability and Maize Yield in South Africa: Results from GME and MELE Methods.” The paper investigates the impact of climate variability on maize yield in the Limpopo Basin of South Africa using the Generalized Maximum Entropy (GME) estimator and Maximum Entropy Leuven Estimator (MELE).

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ICRISAT's BioPower Initiative Develops Biofuels from Sweet Sorghum [viewed]

ICRISAT's Principal Sorghum Breeder BVS Reddy in a field of sweet sorghum.

December 2008: The International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT), a research center of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR), published an overview of achievements, research needs and outlook for sweet sorghum as resource for pro-poor biofuel development. The article, published in ICRISAT's newsletter on the State of the Art on Semi-arid Agriculture (SASA), describes the work of ICRISAT's BioPower Initiative on the use of sweet sorghum for food, fodder and as feedstock for ethanol production in different countries.

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IFPRI Publishes Discussion Paper on Causes and Consequences of Surging Food Prices [viewed]

The International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)

December 2008: The International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), a center of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR), published a discussion paper entitled “Anatomy of a Crisis: The Causes and Consequences of Surging Food Prices,” which provides a comprehensive review of causes and consequences of recent increases in international food prices.

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