Dr AK Padhee, Director, Country Relations and Business Affairs, ICRISAT, recently delivered a lecture on ‘Climate-smart Policies to Sustain Growth of Indian Agriculture’ at Maharana Pratap University of Agriculture and Technology, Udaipur, Rajasthan.
Describing climate change as ‘perhaps the most extreme challenge agriculture in India and across the world is facing today and has to deal with in future’, Dr Padhee went on to highlight a couple of policy options.
“The institution of a Panchayat in the Indian context has the capacity to leverage funds from a plethora of schemes. Allocations under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) can be purposefully utilized in climate-proofing projects such as farm ponds; soil and water management… and many other eco-friendly activities that will adapt and build resilience to climate change,” he said.
“India has already submitted its Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC) (as a part of its commitments to the Paris Agreement) that inter-alia include the adoption of climate friendly practices for a cleaner path of development. Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare has already delineated its intended climate actions in the agriculture sector, such as increasing water use efficiency; promoting organic farming; conservation agriculture practices and so on, with specific targets to be achieved by 2020.”
Dr Padhee had been invited to deliver the Dr A Rathore Memorial Lecture at an event organized by the Alumni Association of the Rajasthan College of Agriculture (RCA), Udaipur, on 19 January 2019.