Commission on Sustainable Agriculture and Climate Change Issues Final Report

28 March 2012: The Commission on Sustainable Agriculture and Climate Change has released its final report proposing policy responses to the challenges of feeding a world confronted with climate change, population growth, poverty, fluctuating food prices and degraded ecosystems.

In the report, titled "Achieving Food Security in the Face of Climate Change," the Commission outlines seven recommendations to be implemented by governments, international institutions, investors, producers, consumers, food companies and researchers. The recommendations related to policy, finance, agriculture, development aid, diet choice, food waste and knowledge management systems.

The Commissions's recommendations encourage: raising the level of investment in sustainable agriculture and food systems over the next decade; sustainably intensifying agricultural production on the existing land base while reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions; and reducing losses and waste in the food system. The report cites evidence that the yields from 16 major crops could be increased by more than 50%. It also stresses the need to mobilize public policies and budgets toward low emission crop breeds and actions that lead to the conservation of land, water and energy.

From the demand side, the Commission calls for policies to encourage eating choices that are good for people and the planet. It also underscores the importance of policies and programmes that empower vulnerable populations, alongside improved data and decision support tools for land managers and policy makers.

The report calls for continued progress under the G20 on the design of rapid response and insurance strategies to protect poor populations from rising food prices and poor harvests. It also urges governments to make commitments for regionally-based research, implementation, capacity building and monitoring to improve agriculture and food systems at the upcoming UN Conference on Sustainable development (UNCSD, or Rio+20). The Commission also released a video to illustrate why and how humanity must change its relationship with food to respond to climate change, global population, eating patterns and the environment.

The Commission was convened by the Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) Program of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR). [Publication: Achieving Food Security in the Face of Climate Change] [Commission Video]