Agriculture Secretary Vilsack traveled to Paris, France for the 21st Conference of Parties (COP21). At the conference, Secretary Vilsack participated in three side events where he addressed the impacts of climate change on agricultural production and food security.
Secretary Vilsack joined Business for Social Responsibility and Field to Market, a consortium of organizations and businesses working toward agricultural sustainability, for a side event highlighting environmental progress and economic opportunities in agriculture. In partnership with the White House Council on Environmental Quality, Secretary Vilsack announced a new report highlighting the Administration’s progress on sustainable land use over the past six years.
Secretary Vilsack also host a side event with participants from the Global Alliance for Climate Smart Agriculture. The Global Alliance for Climate Smart Agriculture was launched at the UN Climate Summit in New York on September 23, 2014 and currently has 101 members, including 22 countries. The participants in this side event, which include Costa Rica, the Food and Agriculture Organization, Ireland, the United States and Vietnam, are all members of the Alliance and will share their reasons for joining the Alliance, their expectations for what the Alliance will achieve, and updates on their actions in support of Alliance’s vision.
Finally, Secretary Vilsack host a side event on Climate Change, Global Food Security, and the U.S. Food System, where he unveiled a new report identifying the effects of climate change on global food security through 2100. The report represents a consensus of authors and contributors from 21 federal, academic, nongovernmental, intergovernmental, and private organizations across four countries regarding climate change effects on global food security and food systems, including implications of these changes for the United States. It includes analysis and projections of food availability, access, and utilization under varying levels of climatic and socioeconomic change.
“Climatic stresses impact all of us and have real consequences on food production, dramatically affecting the yields of crops and threatening food security. All nations have a role to play in supporting agricultural growth and driving the innovation necessary to survive. Greater access to innovative tools and technologies will allow farmers, ranchers, and producers to curb the effects of climate change, increase access to food, and ultimately, provide ladders of opportunity for people in rural areas around the world,” said Secretary Vilsack.