Knowledge for better food systems

Providing scientific data to technical bodies and countries

Erin Biehl's picture

Technical reports used by UNFCCC parties to inform negotiations and Paris Agreement implementation have weight and legitimacy with negotiators, but previous reports have not included enough science about the link between animal food consumption and climate. How can CSOs get such information into more technical reports? How can this help to further legitimize CSOs as scientific technical advisors to UNFCCC parties?  

Question: IPCC Report on Land Use

The IPCC is preparing a special report on “climate change, desertification, land degradation, sustainable land management, food security, and green house gas fluxes in terrestrial ecosystems.” This could be a great opportunity to get existing diet/climate research into a technical report. Nominations for authors of the report are due Wednesday, May 17, 2017. More info here: 

Does your organization have accreditation to nominate an author? Would you recommend specific authors to nominate?

Erin Biehl's picture
Submitted by Erin Biehl on

Simone Lovera from the Global Forest Coalition provided a summary of the Bonn technical meetings this May and what happened in ag:

"The meetings of the Subsidiary Bodies of the Climate Convention here in Bonn are about to wind up, with one more day to go and very, very little concrete results. Most decisions simply state that they will continue discussing the different themes, including the decisions on carbon markets, non-market based approaches and the Sustainable Development Mechanism. No work program on agriculture was agreed upon (yet). However, the co-chairs to the negotiations were allowed to draw the attached list of elements, and until now it looks like countries will accept this paper as a basis for discussions at the next meeting. The co-chairs paper highlights the importance of addressing agriculture not only from a technological perspective but also from an implementation perspective. The nice thing is that the paper highlights livestock a number of times, even though there is no mentioning of addressing the demand-side of unsustainable livestock production or other more profound drivers. But there is a reference to Indigenous knowledge.

I have the impression that our GFC-Brighter Green-FSF side event yesterday, including the powerful presentations by Cynthia, Coraina and Souparna, and our two-week “What’s at Steak” exhibition has had some impact in this respect. The side event was a great success, the room was full (some 60 people), the video from Mozambique impressive (we showed some 10 minutes of it), the presentations well elaborated and the discussion lively. We have particularly tried to highlight the need for multi-dimensional rights-based and socially just solutions in the land use sector, like sustainable diets, rather than one-dimensional approaches like planting monoculture tree plantations.

In general, we have been highlighting the impact of unsustainable livestock production in several interventions the past two weeks (e.g. during expert meetings on mitigation) and I have the impression there is a strongly increased interest in undertaking action in the sector, even though it will be quite a challenge to ensure that such action encompasses holistic, rights-based policies and initiatives like sustainable diets rather than corporate-driven solutions like “conservation agriculture” (which is basically another name for genetically modified round-up ready soy).
Thanks again to all who contributed to the many activities here."

If you attended the May meetings and would like to share any insights on results of the technical meetings, please share!


rsanto's picture
Submitted by rsanto on

Hi Simone, thank you for the very interesting report back about the Bonn intersessional. I agree in particular with your focus on the challenge of ensuring "holistic, rights-based policies and initiatives like sustainable diets rather than corporate-driven solutions like “conservation agriculture” (which is basically another name for genetically modified round-up ready soy)."

I've been wary of similar industry PR efforts. I was wondering if your observations of the meetings have aligned with this author's discussions about "climate-smart agriculture"?