Climate change puts food security at risk

Experts call for bridging gap between agriculture and sustainable development

Our Correspondent July 19, 2023
Impact of food security is growing concern among farmers. PHOTO: REUTERS/FILE


University of Agriculture Faisalabad (UAF) Vice Chancellor Dr Iqrar Ahmad Khan has said that climate change, water scarcity and environmental issues pose difficulties in meeting the increasing food demand for the rapidly growing population of the country.

These concerns were expressed by the UAF VC during his address at the international training workshop on “Environmental and Social Framework Standards: Bridging the Gap between Agriculture and Sustainable Development.” The workshop was organised by the Institute of Soil and Environmental Sciences, where Dr Iqrar Ahmad Khan was the chief guest. He said the food scarcity presented a major challenge for the scientific community and policymakers. He expressed his concerns about the stagnation of productivity in the agricultural sector, which could pose a serious threat to food security.

World Bank representative Lucienne Mbaipor mentioned that the World Bank has been providing resources to upgrade various sectors, including agriculture and technology development, to address the challenges of food security and environmental issues.

She highlighted that the training aimed to equip participants with knowledge about the World Bank’s Environmental and Social Framework (ESF) and its ten environmental and social standards, enabling them to understand the significance of sustainable development and its application in the agriculture sector.

UAF Director of Soil and Environmental Sciences Dr Ghulam Murtaza emphasised the Institute of Soil and Environmental Sciences’ commitment to tackling the challenges of climate change, soil, and water issues through innovative approaches. He further emphasised the pivotal role of the Saline Agricultural Research Centre in reclaiming degraded soils, contributing to the realisation of the Green Pakistan Initiative (GPI) vision.

Senior Social Development Specialist Imranul Haq stated that the World Bank was prioritising the provision of financial resources to member countries to upgrade their infrastructure and achieve their sustainable development goals, thereby enhancing food security and economic stability.

He highlighted the two-day international workshop would help bridge the productivity gap and establish a modern agricultural system that is compatible with climate change.

He stressed the importance of agricultural innovations coupled with precision approaches, emphasising that all necessary steps are being taken to address this urgent need.

Published in The Express Tribune, July 19th, 2023.


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