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IFAD Outlines Economic Benefits of Preparing Small-Scale Farmers for Climate Change

IFAD13 November 2013: As part of its Adaptation for Smallholder Agriculture Programme (ASAP), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) has examined the economic justification behind five of its adaptation activities in Bangladesh, Bolivia, Kenya, Turkey and Viet Nam.

The IFAD report, titled 'The Adaptation Advantage: The Economic Benefits of Preparing Small-Scale Farmers for Climate Change,' was launched at the UNFCCC COP19/CMP9 in Warsaw, Poland. The report centers on examining community and household benefits of adaptation based on: avoided damages, increased production, net incremental income and employment gains. In the case of the Mount Kenya East Pilot Project for Natural Resource Management, IFAD undertook an economic and financial analysis of water resource management and environmental conservation, finding 15 to 50% increases in intervention related income, as well as increased energy efficiency and reduced soil erosion.

In Turkey's Murat River Watershed Rehabilitation Project, IFAD's investments are expected to lead to long-term erosion control, and achieve short-term net benefits in agricultural production related to irrigation and farming inputs. In Viet Nam's Adaptation in the Mekong Delta in Ben Tre and Tra Vinh Provinces, IFAD expects long-term profitability over a 20-year duration based on changes in production systems to involve more intercropping, and increased shrimp cultivation, as well as due to changes in rice production technologies and improved irrigation practices.

In Bangladesh, IFAD's work on the Climate Adaptation and Livelihood Project is expected to reduce vulnerability of villages to natural disasters through infrastructure investment and increase resilience by shifting crop varieties. In Bolivia, the Economic Inclusion Programme for Families and Rural Communities in the Highlands, Lowlands and Inter-Andean Valleys (ACCESOS) expects increased household income based on climate risk management and capacity building for community-based adaptation.

This research supports IFAD's call for climate finance to prioritize investment in small-scale agriculture. It acknowledges the challenges of predicting costs and benefits associated with climate change impacts, but encourages the use of available methodologies. [IFAD Press Release] [IFAD Publication: The Adaptation Advantage: The Economic Benefits of Preparing Small-Scale Farmers for Climate Change] [COP19/CMP9 Launch of the Report]