CLIMATE-SMART agriculture (CSA) is an umbrella approach which deals with the challenges of food security and climate change. Food insecurity in the world is increasing day by day due to ever increase in population with higher demand of foods. In the same way, crop productivity is hampering by climatic uncertainties and changes. The world is looking at an approach which should be climate proof and provide sustainable food systems. Climate-smart agriculture is a triple win as it provides appropriate production, resilience against climatic hazards and storage of carbon in soil, plants and trees. CSA is only system that can develop the technical, policy and investment conditions to achieve sustainable agricultural development for food security under climate change.
CSA is focusing on sustainably increase in crop productivity, farm income, food security development, adapting and building resilience of agricultural and food security systems to climate change at farm as well as globe levels, and mitigating the source of climate change within the context of agriculture (Reducing greenhouse gases emission).
CSA incorporates objectives and principles with sustainable intensification of crop production. Sustainable intensification aims a productive agriculture that conserves and enhances natural resources. It emphases on the judicious use of land and external inputs such as fertilizers, irrigation, pesticides etc. to make production system less vulnerable to climate change (mitigation of GHGs emission) along with higher agricultural productivity. The magnitude, immediacy and wide scope of the effects of changing climate on agricultural systems promote a compelling need to ensure comprehensive integration of CSA pillars into national agricultural planning, investments and programs. Nevertheless, there are some constraints in developing countries such as lack of finance, knowledge and capacity to develop climate resilient varieties. These constraints are major hindrance in implementing of climate smart agriculture.
To make future zero hunger and farmers climate-smart, there is need of greater investments in following areas:
i) Management of climate risks with installment of early warning systems. Major benefit of this facility is that farmers will get weather related updates on their mobile phones. Consequently, farmers will adjust planting time and other crop management practices in accord with weather updates.
ii) Understanding and planning for adaptive transitions that make the food systems more productive and less sensitive to climatic hazards. As in developing countries like Pakistan, mostly farmers are unaware with dilemma of climate change and variability. So, development of Farmer Field School (FFS) and Farmer Advisory Centers (FAC) are needs of hour to educate farmer and make them more restive against any climatic catastrophe.
iii) Exploring the potential of agronomic practices to sequester greenhouse gases in soil. Agriculture is also a contributor of Greenhouse Gases (GHGs) emission in atmosphere. These GHGs are responsible of increase in temperature of the Globe. There are technologies to enhance sequestration of GHGs in soils. Adoptions of these technologies will provide co-benefit to the farmers through mitigation of GHGs and getting credits.
It is evident that Pakistan is the most vulnerable to climate change in South Asia. So, adoption of CSA should be on priority to make country self-food sufficient along with coping negative impact of climate change smartly.
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