Agriculture meets our most basic need of hunger and employs millions across the world. Any threat to this would snowball into a bigger, global crisis. Climate change poses a huge threat to agriculture and its associated processes.
The majority of countries in the developing world survive mainly through agriculture. The importance of the sector is such that until a couple of decades ago, China, the second-largest economy, was solely based and reliant on agriculture. It was through gains acquired from agriculture that allowed for the move on to a bigger, larger, industrial revolution.
In the second most populated country of India, more than half of its people are involved directly or indirectly with the agriculture sector. In Africa, which also has a huge population, agriculture is the basic source of food and income for over half of all families who live there.
With that in mind, imagine farm lands losing their nutrition and turning practically barren. Or, imagine that the water used for irrigation becomes toxic. Now imagine all of this and having to deal with the extremities of weather events. How would these countries survive?
Unfortunately, this is a reality courtesy of climate change. In 2022, parts of the world were flooded, ruining the crops. In the other parts, terrible droughts left farmers in dismay.
So, how do we solve this?
Technology, Technology, Technology
Technology has always emerged as a savior for humanity. Be it the Tsunami that hit in 2004 or Covid-19, with technology our fight against evil has become easier and more feasible.
The revolution is here already
Today drones are being used widely to irrigate fields as well as for spraying insecticides over crops.
With modern day technology, scientists are able to accurately forecast weather. This provides farmers with a window to prepare in the event of an emergency.
Solar-powered water pumps are also giving farmers a way to cut their electricity bills and go green at the same time.
Technology is also used to find out any deficiency in the soil so that it can be treated and made more productive.
But is it enough?
Despite the progress, agriculture is still massively subjected to climate change. Africa stands at a crucial juncture in its history where millions stare at the danger of hunger. This has become more evident since the beginning of the war in Ukraine. Food security has become a real and very serious threat.
In South Asia, countries like India and Pakistan saw a low yield of wheat due to a rise in average temperature. This puts added pressure on the governments as well as businesses to make both ends meet. This in turn, made it increasingly difficult for the world to recover after two years gripped by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Today, at the COP27 Summit, several stakeholders including governments, private firms, banks and NGOs, have been brought together to discuss and find a way to pump more money into the sector.
Additional funds would not only enhance food security but would also help in new technological breakthroughs. Better equipment, with advanced technology, will provide the farmers with a tool in the fight against climate change. This would go a long way in helping agriculture become climate resilient.
More money would also allow farmers to undergo training to adopt the existing technological solutions much faster.