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Wake up now to make agriculture sustainable

UNCTAD Trade and Environment Review 2013

UNCTAD Trade and Environment Review 2013

“The world needs a paradigm shift in agricultural development … to an ‘ecological intensification’ approach,” states the UNCTAD Trade and Environment Review 2013 released yesterday (18 September 2013) in Geneva. “The required transformation is much more profound than simply tweaking the existing industrial agricultural system.”

The new report, titled Wake up before it is too late: Make agriculture truly sustainable now for food security in a changing climate,” is a clarion call for drastic changes to agriculture globally in order to combat hunger and curb further damage to the environment in the face of a changing climate.

Roger Leakey, Senior Fellow at the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) and Professor at the James Cook University, authored the chapter on a new approach to agricultural intensification in the tropics and sub-tropics (starting page 192). The three-point plan to the approach is detailed in Leakey’s recent book Living with the Trees of Life.

The foreword to the UNCTAD review points out the close links food security has with political stability: “The fundamental transformation of agriculture may well turn out to be one of the biggest challenges, including for international security, of the 21st century,” writes Carlos Pérez del Castillo, chairman of the Board of the CGIAR.

The volume was edited by Ulrich Hoffmann of the  UNCTAD Secretariat and authored by over 50 eminent sustainable development experts such as Chris Reij of African Regreening Initiatives and Hans Herren of the Millennium Institute.

The report is a must-read and a solid reference for sustainable agriculture now and into the future.


Trade and Environment Review 2013 –full report: http://unctad.org/en/pages/PublicationWebflyer.aspx?publicationid=666.

Press release of the review: at  http://unctad.org/en/pages/PressRelease.aspx?OriginalVersionID=154

Related links.

Paradigm Shift Urgently Needed In Agriculture http://bit.ly/15DlczM

Leakey book says ‘trees of life’ could nourish the planet, build wealth: http://bit.ly/Omf6Zl

Living with the Trees of Life Facebook page: http://on.fb.me/14lshUT


Daisy Ouya

Daisy Ouya

Daisy Ouya is a science writer and communications specialist with the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF). Over the past 15 years she has been packaging and disseminating scientific knowledge in the fields of entomology, agriculture, health, HIV/AIDS research, and marine science. Daisy is a Board-certified Editor in the Life Sciences (bels.org) and has a Masters’ degree in chemistry from the University of Connecticut, USA. Her BSc is from the University of Nairobi in her native Kenya. She has worked as a journal editor, science writer, publisher, and communications strategist with various organizations. She joined ICRAF in July 2012. Twitter: @daisyouya

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