Agriculture consumes 70% of global fresh water, and occupies nearly 40% of the global land area. As extreme weather events take their toll, the food and agriculture sector is also projected to be hit hard. A large proportion of the rural population make their living from farming, and their livelihoods are on the front line of climate change due to water and thermal stresses. This is especially the case in sub-Saharan Africa where, on an average, over 60% of the population is primarily dependent on agriculture.
Enhanced climate variability and change are considered as major barriers for societal developments as they are affecting societies in many ways. Under this scenario, there is fresh evidence that increased flood / drought frequencies, faster snow melting of glaciers and accelerated sea level rise as a consequence of global warming are highly likely to have profound impacts on ecosystems and communities. The effects of enhanced climate variability and change, such as increasing temperature and decreases/increases in rainfall, have already exhibited negative impacts on rainfed farming and crop production in most tropical and sub-tropical countries. The frequency of occurrences of such consequences is expected to increase in future.
There has to be a renewed focus on the consequences of “mega-drought” in the major river basins of Asia and Africa. Similarly, it is highly important to understand the changing risk from cyclones and floods. To do that the first step is to understand the impact of climate change to all these hydro-meteorological hazards in terms of changed frequencies and severities. That will help estimate the hazard intensities that agriculture is going to be subjected to in future. Comprehensive planning to reduce the economic and ecological impacts of extreme events as well as adoption of technologies for improved land and water management to enhance water efficiency in agriculture are needed. Potential approaches to success include knowledge sharing and cultivation of critical thinking, the promotion of effective tools and technologies, and proper understanding of user priorities and needs.
Through this sub-community, RMSI intends to bring professionals and researchers together to share their successes and evaluate how success in one part of the world could be replicated in other areas. We invite all such sector experts to join this session and share this platform with us as we discuss the following:
- Understanding how climate change in impacting hydro-meteorological hazards
- Estimation of the enhanced frequency and severities,
- Develop understanding of localized impacts on agricultural communities
- Challenges in identification and implementation of adaptation measures,
- what works and what doesn’t work (no regret measures),
- Specific policy changes that need to be brought about
- Best approaches for enhancing the capacity of stakeholders to manage the risks
RMSI invites professionals and sector experts to show-case their implementation approach and methodology on mitigating the impacts of recent disasters in support of protecting the livelihood of communities and explore the scope of replication in other regions prone to similar disasters and risks in this side event.