OECD Agricultural Ministers’ Communiqué Stresses Links Between Agriculture and Climate Change

26 February 2010: The Agriculture Ministers of member States of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) met in Paris, France, and adopted a Communiqué that, among other issues, emphasizes the challenges and opportunities presented by climate change for the agricultural sector.

The Communiqué outlines new policy principles for food and agriculture that highlight the role of the agricultural sector in reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, increasing carbon sequestration, and the need for adaptation. In the document, Ministers call on OECD Governments to ensure that incentives and disincentives are effectively and transparently designed to reflect the total costs and benefits to society, with a view to, inter alia, facilitating adaptation to and mitigation of climate change. They also call for fostering innovation, including transfer of technologies, in order to respond to climate change and reduce waste.

The Ministers further ask the OECD Committee for Agriculture to: identify policy options and market approaches that would encourage “green growth,” including mitigation of the food and agriculture system's contribution to climate change, as well as adaptation to its impacts; and analyze the likely impact of climate change on agriculture and on agro-forestry, the role of the sector in mitigation and adaptation, and the appropriate policy responses. [The Communiqué]