Local farmers are urged to adoptnew technologies and good practices in agriculture as these are needed to ensure food security amid climate change, an environmental organization executive said yesterday.
“We should not only assure that our biodiversity is conserved but also that the people are not hungry,” FPE executive director Oliver Agoncillo said in an interview during the National Environmental Summit that started yesterday in Talisay City, Negros Occidental.
He said that agricultural activities of local farmers have already been affected because of climate change and the need to adopt new technologies and best practices should be observed to ensure that crops production is still stable.
Negros Occidental has been leading in organic agriculture and if climate change will still continue, farmers can no longer predict when the next planting will be, Agoncillo said.
He also said that one of the programs of the event will include agri-preneurshipby Ramon Peñalosa Jr. of the Peñalosa farms in Victorias City, Negros Occidental, that will tackle good practices in agriculture to ensure food security.
Agoncillo said one of the thrusts of this year's event is to ensure that no Filipino is hungry in his own land without compromising the conservation of the environment.
Apart from agricultural activities, watersheds should also be protected to ensure that farming in the lowlands will continue because of its sufficient water supply, he also said.
Water security and sustainability is also at risk in climate change, as it may affect less water or more water supply, and both of them bring harmful effects on farming, he said.
Agoncillo also said Negros Occidental is one of the frontliners in the country in terms of mitigating climate change due to strong government and non-government organization support.
He said Negros has strong NGOs for the environment and a supportive local government that sets the policies and made the province one of the models for combating climate change.
Agoncillo also said the province should further strengthen its initiatives for mitigating climate change as some provinces still need to have infrastructure to really adopt programs for this ailing environmental issue.
FPE is in Bacolod to hold the biennial National Environmental Summit where around 150 environmentalists across the country are participating with their partner community and organizations yesterday until today.
Regional manager for the Visayas,RemiaDebuayan, also said that another proof of Negros being a leading province in climate change mitigation is that government institutions, like the Provincial Environment Management Office, encourage residents to really protect the environment.
She also said that most of their awardees this year were from Negros and this shows that environmental initiatives in the province are good.
Debuayan also said the big renewable energy farms in Negros Island prove that clean energy is prioritized by the province, one of the steps towards fighting climate change.
The National Environmental Summit will also give updates on what will be their next steps in the FPE strategic plan, especially because it will mark its fifth year in 2019, Agoncillo said. *MLG
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