Knowledge for better food systems

Organic Farming, Climate Change Mitigation and Beyond. Reducing the Environmental Impacts of EU Agriculture

This report on organic agriculture and climate change was commissioned by the IFOAM-EU Group and researched and written by FiBL (Research Institute of Organic Agriculture). It highlights organic agriculture’s potential to mitigate and adapt to climate change and underlines the importance of adopting a systemic approach - one which encompasses consumption - to reducing all the environmental impacts of agriculture.

To provide healthy food in a sustainable way, the report authors argue that we need to transform the food & farming system and transition to agriculture and food production that can adapt to unavoidable climate change, preserve our natural heritage such as biodiversity, sustains the quality of our soils, and that improve the livelihood of farmers. The report provides a comprehensive discussion of these varied, yet interlinked, issues.

Chapters cover:

  • Understanding agriculture’s share of greenhouse gas emissions and where they come from
  • How can agricultural greenhouse gas emissions be mitigated?
  • The potential of organic farming to contribute to climate change mitigation
  • Beyond climate change mitigation: the multiple benefits of organic farming
  • How the EU can help improve agriculture practices and simultaneously work towards its climate change goals
  • Conclusions and recommendations

You can read the full report here and see the IFOAM-EU press release here.

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Europe is the world's second-smallest continent by surface area, covering just over 10 million square kilometres or 6.8% of the global land area, but it is the third-most populous continent after Asia and Africa, with a population of around 740 million people or about 11% of the world's population. Its climate is heavily affected by warm Atlantic currents that temper winters and summers on much of the continent. In the European Union, farmers represent only 4.7% of the working population, yet manage nearly half of its land area.

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