Agri­cul­tural ca­pac­ity in­crease to as­sist in cli­mate change fight

China Daily (USA) - - CHINA - By XUWEI in Nan­jing xuwei@chi­nadaily.com.cn

China will fur­ther en­hance the ca­pac­ity of its agri­cul­tural sec­tor to cope with cli­mate change by im­prov­ing the qual­ity of farm­land and re­duc­ing food loss and waste, gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials and ex­perts said on Sun­day.

Cli­mate-related dis­as­ters ac­count for the loss of 50 bil­lion kilo­grams of grain in China ev­ery year, and cli­mate change could fur­ther trig­ger un­cer­tain­ties in the coun­try’s nat­u­ral en­vi­ron­ment, ac­cord­ing to the Chi­naMe­te­o­ro­log­i­cal Ad­min­is­tra­tion.

The gove r n m e n t will con­tinue its ef­forts to im­ple­ment mea­sures such as con­ser­va­tion tillage, in­creas­ing or­gan ic con­tent in soil and bet­ter in­te­grat­ing wa­ter man­age­ment to cope with the im­pact of cli­mate change on the agri­cul­tural sec­tor, Sun Zhonghua, chief agron­o­mist at the Ministry of Agri­cul­ture, said at an event to mark World Food Day on Sun­day.

“We are also work­ing on im­prov­ingthe sus­tain­abil­i­tyof agri­cul­tural devel­op­ment and push­ing for­ward the mod­ern­iza­tion of the agri­cul­tural sec­tor,” he said.

Xu Ming, deputy head of the State Grain Ad­min­is­tra­tion, said at the event that cop­ing with cli­mate change is one of the ma­jor is­sues that the coun­try is fac­ing as it seeks to en­sure food se­cu­rity.

The coun­try’s to­tal pop­u­la­tion is ex­pected to reach 1.5 bil­lion by 2030, and it would have to pro­duce an ex­tra 100 bil­lion kilo­grams of grain to meet the de­mand of such an in­crease.

How­ever, cli­mate change could re­sult in a 5 to 10 per­cent de­crease in the coun­try’s to­tal grain pro­duc­tion in the near fu­ture, the ad­min­is­tra­tion said in a state­ment.

“Based on the cur­rent level of pro­duc­tion, there is a need to in­crease grain acreage by 10 mil­lion hectares,” it said.

It said that cli­mate change could re­sult in ris­ing tem­per­a­tures if no mea­sures are taken, adding that a de­crease in pre­cip­i­ta­tion lev­els would see the area af­fected by droughts in north­ern and south­west­ern re­gions ex­pand, and a rise in the fre­quency of droughts as well as in plant dis­eases and in­sect pests.

Vin­cen­tMartin, China rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the Food and Agri­cul­ture Or­ga­ni­za­tion of the United Na­tions, said China should step up prac­tices such as re­duc­ing food loss and waste, and pre­vent­ing de­for­esta­tion and over­fish­ing to counter the po­ten­tial im­pact of cli­mate change.

It is also im­por­tant for the coun­try to con­vert an­i­mal waste into bio­gas as an al­ter­na­tive and re­new­able en­ergy source, and pre­pare for cli­mate-related dis­as­ters, he said.

“It is also im­por­tant to pri­or­i­tize agri­cul­tural re­search to pro­duce crops that re­quire less wa­ter to grow, and tech­nolo­gies that can pro­duce more from less,” he said.

of grain in China are lost an­nu­ally due to cli­mate related dis­as­ters.

Sun Zhonghua, chief agron­o­mist at the Ministry of Agri­cul­ture

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