Climate-Smart Agriculture Benefits Marine Ecosystems and Coastal Communities - New IFAD Report

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The Marine Advantage – a new report launched by the International Fund for Agricultural Development, is a study on improving the lives of coastal communities, through climate-smart agriculture.

Gilbert Houngbo

“Agriculture in all its forms is central to inclusive and sustainable development and can contribute to national climate commitments,” said IFAD President Gilbert F. Houngbo. “However, without appropriate measures, it can also damage marine ecosystems and fall short of its potential in terms of the

Coastal communities and marine ecosystems can benefit from climate-smart agriculture practices, according to the findings of a new report from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).

The Marine Advantage – Empowering coastal communities, safeguarding marine ecosystems, a study of IFAD’s experience in improving the lives of coastal communities, shows that climate-smart agriculture can also have knock-on benefits for marine ecosystems. Sustainable development in the agriculture sector, including aquaculture, can reduce human pressures on marine ecosystems, which are vulnerable to overfishing, ocean acidification and coral bleaching.

“Agriculture in all its forms is central to inclusive and sustainable development and can contribute to national climate commitments,” said IFAD President Gilbert F. Houngbo. “However, without appropriate measures, it can also damage marine ecosystems and fall short of its potential in terms of the climate."

"IFAD is uniquely placed to empower coastal communities, including Small Island Developing States, in a way that contributes to eradicating hunger and poverty while protecting life below water.”

The research shows that as well as measures that directly tackle problems facing marine ecosystems, such as clearing up litter and mangrove restoration, more environmentally friendly agriculture on land can also reduce chemical run-off and pollution that otherwise seeps into coastal waters and therefore damages coral reefs and ultimately the fisheries and tourism potential of coastal communities.
“IFAD is determined to maximize the marine co-benefits of promoting diversified, climate-smart on-land agriculture, aquaculture and fisheries development," said Margarita Astralaga, Director of IFAD's Environment and Climate Division.

The report includes examples of where IFAD is protecting coastal communities from dwindling fish catches (Djibouti), improving policy and planning frameworks in a Small Island Developing State (Comoros), and helping small island coastal communities to seize precious opportunities for better livelihoods as well as contribute to carbon sequestration through seaweed harvesting (West Papua).
As well as benefits to coastal communities, the report also presents how investments are making a difference in improving the marine ecosystem surrounding them.

“IFAD’s work contributes to five of the specific targets for Sustainable Development Goal 14 relating to life under water,” added Astralaga. “IFAD stands ready to play its part in delivering on the call for action at the Ocean Conference in New York earlier this year.

For a copy of the Marine Advantage Report please click here : .https://www.ifad.org/documents/10180/16101fe1-a5ef-4814-9794-34b13e521ae4

Contacts:

Brian J. Thomson
Senior Communication Specialist
Mobile: +39 366 6121101
b.thomson(at)ifad(dot)org

IFAD invests in rural people, empowering them to reduce poverty, increase food security, improve nutrition and strengthen resilience. Since 1978, we have provided about US$18.9 billion in grants and low-interest loans to projects that have reached some 470 million people. IFAD is an international financial institution and a specialized United Nations agency based in Rome – the UN’s food and agriculture hub. For more information visit http://www.ifad.org

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