Farming a climate-change concern

National

AGRICULTURE is a major cause of climate change due to its high emissions of greenhouse gases.
Farmers in East New Britain were told recently that although food and agriculture were greatly affected by climate change, agricultural activities had been a major contributor to climate change.
Department of Agriculture and Livestock’s director for food security Brown Konabe, when addressing farmers in ENB last week, said greenhouse gases produced through farming activities accounted for 20-25 per cent of global emissions and that figure was rising.
He said the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) estimated that emissions from agriculture, forestry and fisheries in the world had doubled over the past 50 years and could increase by 30 per cent by 2050, if not reduced. “The main sources of greenhouse gas emissions in agriculture are fermentation, manure in livestock, rice cultivation, synthetic fertilisers, crop residues, cultivation of organic soil, burning of grassland, bushes and crop residues, and energy used in agriculture,” Konabe said.
He said many people and farmers in the country were not aware that agriculture was a major emitter of greenhouse gases and a contributor to climate change.
“This can create casualties if actions are not taken to modify existing farming practices to make them climate friendly,” Konabe said.
He said there was need to raise awareness.
According to Konabe, there is lack of data on greenhouse gas emissions from the agriculture sector in Papua New Guinea.

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