Pathways out of the climate chaos

Silvia Ribeiro | 21 November 2018 | climate crisis

Limiting global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial is feasible. And it is our best hope of achieving environmental and social justice, of containing the impacts of a global crisis that was born out of historical injustice and highly unequal responsibility. An excellent piece by Silvia Ribeiro of the ETC Group, showing why we need 'radical realism' to fight the climata crisis, not artificial and dangerous technofixes.

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Our land is worth more than carbon

CCFD-Terre Solidaire | 05 July 2018 | climate crisis | France

While farming is one of humanity’s activities that generates most greenhouse gas, carbon sequestration in farmland is increasingly put forward as a means of limiting climate change. Internationally, initiatives of this type are mushrooming. Is this a miracle solution or just an excuse for not reducing food-related emissions?

CCFD-Terre Solidaire’s new report – "Our land is worth more than carbon", analyses in detail carbon sequestration in soil and the complicated linkage between agriculture and climate change. It examines our agri-food systems both upstream and downstream from production and looks at the challenges in the light of environmental, economic, social and cultural criteria.

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Via Campesina published a number of interesting papers on agroecology and climate justice in Southern and Eastern Africa. They include country reports from Uganda, Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Tanzania, and a general overview booklet, and contain interesting perspectives from farmers on the ground and examples on how they are already dealing with climate change.

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Norwegian climate policy affects the poorest

Hanne Svarstad and Tor A. Benjaminsen | 19 June 2018 | land grabbing, climate crisis | Tanzania

Many are aware that global climate change is likely to hit poor people the hardest. Few, on the other hand, know that there are measures to mitigate climate change in the Global South that today are implemented to the detriment of poor people. Even fewer are aware of Norway’s central role.

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Farming for a small planet

Frances Moore Lappé | 12 January 2018 | corporations, climate crisis, food sovereignty

An excellent, and well documented, summary article by Frances Moore Lappé explaining why the industrial food system can't feed the world, and agroecology can.

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For several decades, the prospect of a better life has prompted countless inhabitants of rural parts of Africa to head to cities. In Senegal’s Fuladu region, a local initiative aimed at making agriculture more viable aims to reverse that trend. It revolves around seeds.

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Food Tank interviews GRAIN about its recent report on industrial meat and climate.

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In Brazil, samba drums up opposition to factory farming

Jan Rocha, Climate News Network | 21 February 2017 | climate crisis | Brazil

Concern about the environmental impact of industrialised farming through the use of pesticides and the destruction of the rainforest has even spread to Brazil’s famous Rio carnival. One of the most famous samba schools, Imperatriz Leopoldinese, will take part later this month in the all-night parade in Rio de Janeiro, singing and dancing to highlight the plight of the Amazon’s indigenous Xingu population, whose reserve is now completely surrounded by cattle and soy fields. The musical protest has aroused a furious response from the agribusiness lobby, which has accused the sambistas of denigrating their efforts to feed the population.

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The biggest drivers of greenhouse gas (GHG) emission on the planet are industrial meats and dairy rather than transportation, says a new report. However, the rich countries, where these industries are mostly located, have been sidestepping these findings. Moreover, the meat industry lobbyists accuse poor and developing countries for it. The new report published by Spain-based international non-profit GRAIN in January this year claims that industrial meat production generates more GHGs than the world’s entire transportation sector. Due to the pressure from meat industry lobbyists, no meaningful action has been worked out to cut emission. The GHG emission has been causing rise in global temperature, which is perpetuating climate change. The target of reducing greenhouse gas emission to limit global warming to 2°C by 2050 can be achieved by cutting down industrial meat and dairy consumption.

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As a new year dawns, it is hard not to be dazzled by the current pace of technological change in food and agriculture. However, there is a risk that these technologies blind us to the very real problems facing modern agriculture – problems that are rapidly undermining the previous round of technological advances. Crop-breeding innovations are merely a short-term solution for falling yields. Only agricultural diversity can ensure food security and resilience.  An excellent reflection by  Olivier De Schutter and Emile Frison.

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