[Answered] What do you understand by the term ‘Agroecology’. How Agroecology is a better alternative to other climate smart agriculture models?

Demand of the question
Introduction. What is Agrocecology?
Body. Advantages of Agrocecology as a practice. Why Agrocecology is better alternative to climate smart Agriculture?
Conclusion. Way forward.

Agroecology is an integrated approach that simultaneously applies ecological and social concepts and principles to the design and management of food and agricultural systems. It seeks to optimise the interactions between plants, animals, humans and the environment while taking into consideration the social aspects that need to be addressed for a sustainable and fair food system.

Advantages of Agroecology as a practice:

  1. Agroecology is fundamentally different from other approaches to sustainable development. It is based on bottom-up and territorial processes, helping to deliver contextualised solutions to local problems.
  2. Agroecological innovations are based on the co-creation of knowledge, combining science with the traditional, practical and local knowledge of producers.
  3. By enhancing autonomy and adaptive capacity, agroecology empowers producers and communities as key agents of change.
  4. Rather than tweaking the practices of unsustainable agricultural systems, agroecology seeks to transform food and agricultural systems, addressing the root causes of problems in an integrated way and providing holistic and long-term solutions. This includes an explicit focus on social and economic dimensions of food systems.
  5. Agroecology places a strong focus on the rights of women, youth and indigenous peoples.

Why Agroecology is better alternative to Climate-Smart agriculture?

  1. Agroecology and CSA are fundamentally different in important regards. For example, CSA does not exclude practices and technologies that can undermine, or are incompatible with, agroecological approaches.
  2. Agroecology in the context of food sovereignty goes much further than Climate-smart Agriculture’s focus on agricultural production alone.
  3. CSA  represents a continuation of business-as-usual and industrial agriculture in which farmers are increasingly dependent on agrochemical corporations for external inputs and global commodity markets for the sale of their farm produce.
  4. CSA’s practices are not at all compatible with the more transformative visions of agroecology.
  5. By promoting the rights of people to access natural resources, agroecology supports them to produce their own food and make decisions about the food they want to eat.
  6. Agroecology is better than Climate Smart Agriculture because it builds on the knowledge and experience of local farmers to keep the soil fertile and to adapt to climate change.
  7. Agroecology reduces our dependence on fossil fuels preserves women’s knowledge on traditional seeds, and gives them more control over their own income and resources.
  8. It also promotes social values such as community solidarity, environmental preservation, and the cultural dimensions of food, which all contribute to building stable and healthy societies.
  9. The house of agroecology is therefore not a laboratory. It is the hands of the millions of local farmers, women and men, who for centuries have saved their seeds, managed their soils and adapted to changing environments.

Agroecology is the most viable solution for building farmers’ food security and their resilience to climate change. Counties must train millions of farmers in developing countries to support their transition from conventional agriculture to agroecology. Also support for organisations to influence national and global public policies to support agroecology is important.

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