Climate-smart agriculture (CSA) is an integrated approach to managing landscapes—cropland, livestock, forests and fisheries—that addresses the interlinked challenges of food security and accelerating climate change.

A growing global population and changing diets are driving up the demand for food. Production is struggling to keep up as crop yields level off in many parts of the world, ocean health declines, and natural resources—including soils, water, and biodiversity—are stretched dangerously thin. A 2020 report found that nearly 690 million people—or 8.9 percent of the global population—are hungry, up by nearly 60 million in five years. The food security challenge will only become more difficult, as the world will need to produce about 70 percent more food by 2050 to feed an estimated 9 billion people.

The challenge is intensified by agriculture’s extreme vulnerability to climate change. Climate change’s negative impacts are already being felt, in the form of increasing temperatures, weather variability, shifting agroecosystem boundaries, invasive crops and pests, and more frequent extreme weather events. On farms, climate change is reducing crop yields, the nutritional quality of major cereals, and lowering livestock productivity.


While built on existing knowledge, technologies, and principles of sustainable agriculture, CSA is distinct in several ways. First, it has an explicit focus on addressing climate change. Second, CSA systematically considers the synergies and tradeoffs that exist between productivity, adaptation and mitigation. Finally, CSA aims to capture new funding opportunities to close the deficit in investment. Intentional advocacy and investment in this regard will deliver the triple benefits of Climate-smart agriculture in Nigeria which include:

  1. Increased productivity:

The production of more and better food to improve nutrition security and boost incomes, especially of 75 percent of the world’s poor who live in rural areas and mainly rely on agriculture for their livelihoods.

  1. Enhanced resilience:

The reduction in vulnerability to drought, pests, diseases and other climate-related risks and shocks; and improvement of the capacity to adapt and grow in the face of longer-term stresses like shortened seasons and erratic weather patterns.

  1. Reduced emissions:

Pursuance of lower emissions for each calorie or kilo of food produced, avoidance of deforestation from agriculture and identification of ways to absorb carbon out of the atmosphere.


In the face of current realities in Nigeria, urgent substantial investments in adaptation and Climate-smart agriculture specifically, is required to maintain current yields and to achieve production and food quality increases to meet current and future demands.




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