AFSA is campaigning to influence the narrative around climate change and agriculture to support agroecological practices as an adaptation and mitigation measure. The campaign aims to place agroecology as a key policy response to climate change that is negatively impacting the economic, social and ecological life of Africans. AFSA’s huge continental network will target 5 million African citizens over the course of two years. Citizens – women, men and young people – will be mobilized and policy makers influenced in 10 African countries. The campaign will also target policy making institutions including the African Union, Regional Economic Communities and the Sustainable Development Growth Center for Africa. The campaign will use innovative messaging and employ the full range of communication tools such as videos and stories and as well as advocacy within policy meetings.
Climate change is already a reality for millions of African farmers, pastoralists and fishers, as droughts, rangeland degradation and ocean temperature rises threaten livelihoods and food security. With around 70% of the population dependent on rain fed farming, Africa does not have the safety net of wealthier, industrialized nations.
The IPCC 1.5C Report 2018 is clear: we have just 12 years to make radical emission cuts if we are to avert a climate catastrophe. Global food systems generate one-third of all greenhouse gases and account for 75% of global deforestation. Much of this is linked to industrial farming, e.g. fossil fuel use, fertilizer production, burning forests to make way for large-scale monocrops.
Current African policy solutions increase pressure on small scale food producers to take up industrial agriculture initiatives such as climate smart agriculture, GMO seeds, and fossil fuel based chemical inputs, releasing the carbon stored in the soil, while increasing the burden of GHGs in the atmosphere, and polluting precious water resources.
AFSA’s campaign “Agroecology for Climate Action” aims at influencing public opinion, changing attitudes, spreading information to have an impact on decision-makers in society with a hope of limiting and helping to prevent global climate changes. AFSA aims to build a movement of citizens actively influencing decisions on food systems in Africa and their impact on climate change. Ten national networks will actively drive public opinion and influence decision makers to shift agriculture and food policy away from destructive industrial farming and adopt agroecological farming as a key climate response, reducing GHG emissions and putting carbon back in the ground.