Organic Agriculture as Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation Strategies in Ni

By Perpetua Nnamuchi


organic agriculture is so far the most promising approach for mitigation and adaptation to climate change. Organic agriculture presents a positive example of how farmers can help mitigate climate change and adapt to its predictable and unpredictable impacts. It can as well serve as a benchmark for allocating development resources to climate change adaptation or to measure progress in implementing climate-related multilateral environmental agreements. The benefits of Organic Agriculture regarding climate change can be summarized as follows:
Organic agriculture has considerable potential for reducing emission of greenhouse gases
Organic agriculture in general requires less fossil fuel per hectare and kilogram of produce to the avoidance of synthetic fertilizers. Organic agriculture aims at improving soil fertility and nitrogen supply by using leguminous crops, crop residues and cover crops.
The enhanced soil fertility leads to a stabilization of soil organic matter and in many cases to a sequestration of carbon dioxide into the soils.
This in turn increases the soils water retention capacity, thus contributing to better adaptation of organic agriculture under unpredictable climatic conditions with higher temperatures and uncertain precipitation levels. Organic production methods emphasizing soil carbon retention are most likely to withstand climatic challenges particularly in those countries most vulnerable to increased climatic change. Soil erosion, an important source of CO2 losses, is effectively reduced by organic agriculture.
Organic agriculture can contribute substantially to agro forestry production system.
Organic systems are highly adaptive to climate change due to the application of traditional skills and farmer’s knowledge, soil fertility building techniques and a high degree of diversity.
Organic Agriculture as Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation Strategies in Ni
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Climate change is now a serious and long-term threat that has the potential to affect every part of the globe. The impacts of climate change are already being felt in many sectors, and significant harm from it, is already occurring. With the recent evidence indicating that the world has already warmed by 0.8 degree Celsius since the pre industrial era. Nigeria had been identified to be the top ten (10) most vulnerable countries to climate change (Anuforom, 2016). Under the business as usual, if adverse burning of fossil fuel as well as increase in industrialization is not put in check, global mean temperature could reach around 2 degree Celsius by 2060 (PACJA, 2009). For Nigeria, a recent study by DFID (2009) predicts a possible sea level rise from 1990 levels to 0.3m by 2020 and 1m by 2050; and rise in temperature of up to 3.2 degree Celsius by 2050 under a high climate change scenario. This is based on Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) assumptions, latest research findings and results of a consultation exercise in Nigeria. In line with the subject matter, changing climate change patterns have already begun to have considerable impact on agricultural production in many regions.

          This seminar paper presents the latest scientific findings to show how organic agriculture as a holistic sustainable production management can contribute to the promotion and enhancement of agro-ecosystem health, including biodiversity, biological cycles and soil biological activity for effective climate change adaptation and mitigation strategies for the agricultural sector in Nigeria. Organic agriculture is a holistic or an alternative production system that sustains the health of soils and ecosystems and people. It relies on ecological processes, biodiversity and cycles adapted to local conditions rather than the use of inputs with adverse effects. Organic agriculture promotes and enhances agro-ecosystem health, including biodiversity biological cycles (pest control) and soil biological activity (crop rotation, green manure and compost) It emphasis the use of management practices in preference to the use of off-farm inputs, taking into account conditions requiring locally adapted systems. 

          In conclusion, organic agriculture is not only a specific agricultural production system, it is also a systematic and encompassing approach to sustainable livelihoods in general, where due account is given to relevant factors of influence for sustainable development and vulnerability, be this on physical, economic or socio-cultural levels (Eyhorn, 2007).

About the Author

Perpetua Nnamuchi

Perpetua Nnamuchi

A Student Institution: Enugu State University of Science and Technology ESUT Agbani, Enugu State. Faculty: Agriculture and Natural Resources Management. Department: Agricultural Economics and Extension.


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