Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Agroforestry can ensure food security, mitigate effects of climate change in Africa

Date:
March 10, 2014
Source:
World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF)
Summary:
Agroforestry can help to achieve climate change mitigation and adaptation while at the same time providing livelihoods for poor smallholder farmers in Africa, a new article suggests. Scientists say it could be a win-win solution to the seemingly difficult choice between reforestation and agricultural land use, because it increases the storage of carbon and may also enhance agricultural productivity.

This is David Kenduywo at his farm in Kembu, Bomet County, Kenya. He grows fodder trees and shrubs such as Calliandra calothyrsus for his dairy cattle and goats.
Credit: ICRAF/Daniel Kapsoot

Agroforestry can help to achieve climate change mitigation and adaptation while at the same time providing livelihoods for poor smallholder farmers in Africa.

Related Articles


Scientists at the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) say agroforestry -- which is an integrated land use management technique that incorporates trees and shrubs with crops and livestock on farms -- could be a win-win solution to the seemingly difficult choice between reforestation and agricultural land use, because it increases the storage of carbon and may also enhance agricultural productivity.

In a special issue of Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, scientists say that in most parts of Africa, climate change mitigation focuses on reforestation and forest protection however, such efforts to reduce deforestation conflict with the need to expand agricultural production in Africa to feed the continent's growing population.

Agriculture in Africa is dominated by smallholder farmers. Their priority is to produce enough food. Under such circumstances, any measures that will be put in place to mitigate the effects of climate change should also improve food production.

"This mixture shows the role that agroforestry can play in addressing both climate mitigation and adaptation in primarily food-focused production systems of Africa" says Dr. Cheikh Mbow, Senior Scientist, Climate Change and Development at the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) and lead author of the article.

"It has been demonstrated by science that if you develop agroforestry it has the potential to buffer the impact of climate change. For example, a farm with trees will suffer less to the impacts of climate change because it will absorb some of these impacts so agroforestry is a good response to develop resilience of agrosystems to the challenges brought about by climate change" he says.

The report however notes that for farmers to incorporate trees in their farms there is need to revise the cultivation methods and provide them with some support to ensure swift adoption.

Agroforestry is one of the most common land use systems across landscapes and agroecological zones in Africa but need much more adoption in order to increase the impact on food security. With food shortages and increased threats of climate change, interest in agroforestry is gathering for its potential to address various on-farm adaptation needs. "The failure of extension services in poor African countries limits the possibility to scale up innovations in agroforestry for improved land use systems ."

The scientists conclude that agroforestry should therefore attract more attention in global agendas on climate change mitigation because of its positive social and environmental impacts.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Cheikh Mbow, Pete Smith, David Skole, Lalisa Duguma, Mercedes Bustamante. Achieving mitigation and adaptation to climate change through sustainable agroforestry practices in Africa. Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, 2014; 6: 8 DOI: 10.1016/j.cosust.2013.09.002

Cite This Page:

World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF). "Agroforestry can ensure food security, mitigate effects of climate change in Africa." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 March 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140310111545.htm>.
World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF). (2014, March 10). Agroforestry can ensure food security, mitigate effects of climate change in Africa. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 2, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140310111545.htm
World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF). "Agroforestry can ensure food security, mitigate effects of climate change in Africa." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140310111545.htm (accessed March 2, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Earth & Climate News

Monday, March 2, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Whale-Watching Scientists Spot Baby Orca

Whale-Watching Scientists Spot Baby Orca

AP (Feb. 28, 2015) Researchers following endangered killer whales spotted a baby orca off the coast of Washington state, the third birth documented this winter but still leaving the population dangerously low. (Feb. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Bridge Collapses Due to Flooding in Bolivia

Bridge Collapses Due to Flooding in Bolivia

Reuters - News Video Online (Feb. 28, 2015) Heavy rain and flooding sweep through parts of Bolivia causing damage and leaves more than 2,000 people homeless. Sophia Soo reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Death Toll from Afghan Avalanches Tops 200

Death Toll from Afghan Avalanches Tops 200

AFP (Feb. 27, 2015) More than 200 people have been killed in a series of avalanches triggered by heavy snowfall in Afghanistan. Duration: 00:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
France, Philippines Call for Agreement on Climate Change

France, Philippines Call for Agreement on Climate Change

Reuters - News Video Online (Feb. 27, 2015) The presidents of France and the Philippines issue a joint appeal for a binding agreement on climate change. Katie Sargent reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins