Investment in agricultural research key to offsetting climate change impacts

On Sept. 23, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the World Bank, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, the European Commission, Switzerland, Sweden, and Germany announced commitments of more than $790 million to address the impact of climate change on food and agriculture. These commitments followed a recent call by the Global Commission on Adaptation, led by Ban Ki Moon, Bill Gates, and Kristalina Georgieva, for increased resource allocations to international agricultural research. Specifically, the Commission called for a doubling of investments in CGIAR, the organization best known for fostering Asia’s green revolution. (IFPRI is a member.) These calls and commitments recognize the scale, context, and location of the challenges confronting the global food system. And, they recognize CGIAR’s reach and effectiveness. The best available estimates indicate that doubling the CGIAR budget, by itself, goes half way to offsetting the implications of climate change for global hunger by 2050, alongside generating a multiplicity of other human and environmental benefits.
Photo Credit: Neil Palmer/CIAT/CCAFS