Leaders sign food sustainability declaration at COP28
Reacting to the food agreement signed at COP28, which includes the need for agricultural systems to be included in countries’ plans to tackle climate change, known as Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), IIED executive director Tom Mitchell said:
"This agreement is a tentative first step in addressing one of the thorniest problems of the climate crisis – our broken food systems. They are responsible for so many greenhouse gas emissions, from cutting down forests and clearing land for animal feed, to the emissions of cattle themselves. It's staggering there has been no obligation to include this sector in emissions reductions plans for so long.
“Government subsidies have long supported the polluting effects of large scale agriculture, acting as a hidden brake on climate action. These payments should be redirected in a way that means people and nature can thrive.”
Reacting to the agreement's pledges on food security and help for farmers and workers, Mitchell added: "Small-scale farmers are already spending billions of their own dollars to fight the climate crisis, which they have done little to cause. This group produces a third of the world's food, so leaders must deliver quickly on the support they've promised here."
Notes to editors
- IIED recently published a paper on the needs of smallholder farmers who are paying billions from their own pockets to fight climate change