15 Nov 2017

Joint SBI/SBSTA Closing Plenary @ COP23, Statement by Bjørn Gimming in representation of the Farmers Constituency


Credit: MatMerk

Bjørn Gimming, WFO member from Norway gave his statement during the SBI/SBSTA Closing Plenary at COP23 in Bonn, Germany.

"The Farmers’ Constituency represents millions of farmers from all corners of the world, from smallholder farmers to large scale farmers, those planting crops, raising livestock, practising silviculture and fisher folk.

 A changing climate threatens food security and our ability as primary producers, especially small farmers, to feed a growing and more affluent global population. Food production must not be compromised. Achieving food security is part of the UN’s sustainable development agenda which requires physical and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food.

 The Paris Agreement clearly recognised these challenges. It accepted «the fundamental priority of safeguarding food security and ending hunger, and the particular vulnerabilities of food production systems to the adverse impacts of climate change». Article 2.1b set out the aim to strengthen the global response to the threat of climate change by «fostering climate resilience and low greenhouse gas emissions development, in a manner that does not threaten food production».

 Yesterday at the final SBSTA discussions on agriculture, we heard Parties talk of their happiness and pride at being part the agricultural family. We share those feelings because we know we are a «special sector».

 Innovation and technology transfer, the sharing and developing of sound scientific and technical information, followed by investment in research and extension will all have critical roles in meeting the challenges ahead.

 After the successful SBI in-session workshop in May on observer engagement and the Presidency’s open dialogue last week, we urge you to continue to ensure the participation of civil society organisations especially farmers and farmers’ organisations.

 We still believe the operating entities of the finance mechanism need to assign a higher priority to sustainable agriculture in their funding programmes as an ambitious financing framework is especially necessary for farmers in developing countries.

 Finally, we thank Parties for their efforts and perseverance and we look forward to a COP decision on our «special sector». Farmers from around the world offer both SBI and SBSTA our support and particular expertise as we start out on an exciting new chapter".