Shifting to climate-resilient agriculture benefits Africa, argues Amujae Leader Bogolo Kenewendo in landmark article

A new approach to agriculture in Africa—one that is climate-resilient and sustainable—is needed to help the continent withstand the impact of climate change.

To help define this new approach, Amujae Leader Bogolo Kenewendo and a team of leading experts wrote an article recently on how ‘regenerative agriculture,’ which aims to have a minimal environmental impact, can be adapted to the African context. This would benefit smallholder farmers—who are amongst the world’s most vulnerable to climate change.

Ms. Kenewendo and the co-authors—including Dr. Agnes Kalibata, an agricultural scientist and policymaker and current President of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa; Ndidi Okonkwo Nwuneli, an expert on social innovation, agriculture and nutrition, entrepreneurship, and youth development; and Zoë Karl-Waithaka, a Partner at Boston Consulting Group and co-leader of the firm’s African food system practice—believe that the solution lies in high-yielding, resilient, and adaptive practices (HYRAP).

Such practices, the article noted, contribute to improving livelihoods and food security, can resist the impact of climate change, and can withstand erratic weather patterns. They can, therefore, “deliver sufficient, sustainable, and nutritious food for Africa.” 

Emphasizing HYRAP’s potential to improve livelihoods and restore the natural environment, the authors argued that the public, private, and social sectors must take decisive actions to support the implementation of such practices. This can be achieved through tax incentives, subsidies, innovative financing, and media campaigns.

In conclusion, Ms. Kenewendo—who was recently appointed as UN Climate Change High-Level Champions’ Special Advisor—and the co-authors stressed the importance of a swift transition toward HYRAP in order to address the needs of both African small-scale farmers and environmental sustainability: 

“Adopting HYRAP is not a choice—it is a necessity—if we truly wish to confront climate change.  The continent must become more self-sufficient and work towards not only food security but food abundance as well.”

Read the full article here.

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