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18.04.2019 |

Study: Agroecology can help to mitigate climate change

Agroecology, a viable solution (Photo: CC0)

Agroecology, including organic farming, can make an enormous contribution towards keeping global warming below 2°C, according to a new report from the French think tank IDDRI. The study, published on April 16th, compares different scenarios for agriculture with the aim of achieving carbon neutrality by 2050, which would be required if we want to keep global warming below 2°C. The scientists write that “the sustainable intensification of agricultural production, in a land sparing logic, is most often considered as a necessary step to achieve this.” Those climate mitigation strategies rely on intensifying food production by increasing yields to free up land for afforestation and bioenergy. However, the authors question those scenarios, given the importance yield increases play therein. “Assumptions on yield increases seem very high (up to +30%) if one considers, on the one hand their recent stagnation in Europe (particularly for cereals),” they write. On the other hand, this intensification would require a high use of pesticides and synthetic fertilisers, which risks damaging soil health and biodiversity. This could result in potentially further degradation of organic matter content and thus lead to lower yields rather than higher ones, while potentially undermining the capacity of European farming to adapt to climate change. [+] more ...

Read our summaries of the main topics.

The Original Report

Agriculture at a Crossroads
The original version of the full report, five regional reports and the Synthesis Report in English, with a feature that allows you to make comments and/or add important information.


Donors of globalagriculture Bread for all biovision Bread for the World Misereor Heidehof Stiftung Hilfswerk der Evangelischen Kirchen Schweiz Rapunzel
English versionDeutsche VersionDeutsche Version