Mitigating agricultural emissions while achieving food security

Climate Action Tracker Decarbonisation Series

Published: 24/01/2018

This analysis of agricultural emissions by the Climate Action Tracker shows that reducing emissions through changes in farming practices alone will not be enough to limit global warming to 1.5°C, but changing our diets and reducing food waste could make significant additional reductions, which calls for a much more holistic approach.

Agriculture accounts for roughly 10% of global greenhouse gas emissions, and as much as 50% of non-CO2emissions, at 5–6 GtCO2e/year.  To limit warming to 2°C, we need to reduce non-CO2 agricultural emissions by at least 1 GtCO2e/year—an 11%–18% reduction by 2030 (and larger reductions thereafter), compared with a business-as-usual (BAU) scenario.  However, to meet the Paris Agreement’s 1.5°C warming limit, that reduction would need to more than double to 2.7 GtCO2e/year.

The briefing, as part of the CAT’s decarbonisation series, looks at options for mitigating non-CO2emissions from agriculture from two angles: key areas “on the field,” and trends in consumer behaviour.

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Yvonne Deng
Climate Strategies and Policies