Now, climate change is adding a new level of risk to our lives. Addressing the climate crisis has led to the implementation of specific and costly projects.
EU countries implement EAFRD funding through rural development programmes (RDPs). At least 30% of the funds in each RDP must be dedicated to measures relevant to the environment and climate change. Most of the money is channelled through grants and annual payments to farmers promoting the most environmentally friendly practices.
RDPs are co-financed from national budgets and can be drawn up at the national or regional level. National and regional managing authorities make decisions on the selection of projects and the granting of payments. The European Commission approves and monitors the RDPs.
The level of risk and climate change impact vary from country to country, even depending on social status and purchasing power.
Poor farmers will feel the sting of these changes at the same time that the world needs their help to feed a growing population. By 2050, global food demand is expected to increase by 60%. Declining harvests would strain the global food system, increasing hunger and eroding the enormous progress the world has made against poverty over the past half-century.
Among these countries are some of the world’s poorest, whose responsibility for greenhouse gas emissions is many times less than that of people in developed countries or large emerging economies. In the case of Sierra Leone, it will have to spend $90 million a year to adapt to the climate crisis, although its citizens are responsible for about 0.2 tons of carbon dioxide emissions a year, while the United States generates about 80 times more.
Africa is already one of the worst affected regions while the situation continues to worsen. According to the Power Shift Africa study, Adapt or Die: An Analysis of African Climate Adaptation Strategies, African countries will spend an average of 4% of GDP on adapting to the challenges of climate change.
Rising temperatures in the coming decades will cause major disruptions in agriculture, especially in tropical areas. Crops will fail to grow due to lack or excess rainfall. Pests will increasingly thrive in a warmer climate and destroy crops.
Farmers in richer countries will also experience negative changes. But they have ways to lower these risks. They can plant drought-resistant crops, use sophisticated soil testing to make their land more productive, and protect themselves from losses with crop insurance.
Everyone needs to be more aware of the need to support more sustainable investments and that early investment creates wealth and makes a sustainable future possible.