Study on the impact of climate change, its mitigation, and adaptation measures: Fair Climate Fund

Fairtrade Strategy aims to promote sustainable development and reduce poverty through fairer trade. It targets vulnerable and disadvantaged producers, many of whom are severely affected by climate change. Droughts, floods, temperature variability, soil health depletion, and crop diseases are some of the consequences of rising global temperatures. Climate change is a multi-dimensional phenomenon that disrupts not only the environment but also the economic, social, and even cultural dimensions of the lives of producers and their communities.

Fairtrade aims to develop a climate change strategy to help producers adapt to climate change. The strategy intends to focus on the reduction of carbon emissions while recognizing the devastating impacts of climate change and the necessity to develop a more sustainable way of production. The intended impact of the climate change strategy is to secure the livelihoods of the affected producers by enhancing their resilience to climate change (climate change adaptation), by developing sustainable agricultural operations aimed at reducing their carbon footprint (climate change mitigation

In 2021 an agreement was signed between Fairtrade International and Fair Climate Fund for conducting a study on the impact of climate change, its mitigation, and adaptation measures for its producers of 04 crops: Coffee, Tea, Rice & Cotton. The project is being funded by the European Union Commission.

The study will comprises 03 parts:-

  1. Measuring GHG emission through current agricultural practices and the measures to reduce it (verifiable quantitatively)
  2. Calculating carbon sequestered for organically cultivated crops (Per Producer organisation) with a view to exploring the possibility of trading carbon credits
  3. Understanding the existing Climate Change Challenges and suggesting effective adaptive mechanisms.

Climate Change Consultation Meeting of Rice Producers in India!

Following the agreement, an initial Climate Change Consultation Meeting was organised by Fairtrade NAPP with Rice Producers on March 16th  in New Delhi, India. The meeting was attended by members from Sharsid Overseas Private Limited(Sharsid- Himalayan Wetland Basmati growers group R.S.Pura), Pratithi Organic Foods Pvt Limited, Nature Bio-Foods Ltd and Kisan Samridhi Society.

The objective of the meeting was to provide an overview of the project to the producers by Fair Climate Fund and to brief them on the concept of GHG Emissions and its guidance. The briefing was followed by consultation with producers on the impact of climate change, its adaptation and mitigation practices, and sharing of desk research and field studies.

The consultation process has helped the producers prepare for the study that will be conducted in 02 phases

Phase 01 (ongoing)

  • To understand the deleterious effects of climate change on the region in general.
  • To comprehend the effect of the climate change on rice crops against parameters such as yield, quality, cost of production, etc. and to suggest crop-specific adaptive mechanisms
  • To document the current agricultural operations and calculate GHG emissions contributed by it.
  • To recommend a set of implementable practices that would reduce GHG emissions. (Must be able to quantify reductions) at the end of the study.

Phase 2

  • After the completion of the study in the first phase, Fairtrade Climate Fund to recommend package of practices to reduce GHG emissions (if any) and validate it by implementing a demo plot/ plots in the study areas. These recommendations OR practices must withstand the scrutiny of a third-party audit in the event of the possibility of carbon credit transactions. This aspect will be analyzed during the 6-month project cycle (from sowing to harvest cycle)
  • The IOT-based remote monitoring mechanism shall help enable quantifying the reduction levels of GHG emissions and the amount of carbon sequestration.
  • Explore possibility of revenue generation through sale of carbon credits according to Sustainable Development Mechanism (SDM)
  • In the event of such a possibility establish a mechanism for SPO’s to scale the current practices to support selling carbon credits as an additional income opportunity.