Enhancing Climate Change Mitigation through Agriculture

image of Enhancing Climate Change Mitigation through Agriculture

Agriculture, with its growing contribution to global greenhouse gas emissions and opportunities to mitigate emissions, can help close the gap between existing global mitigation efforts and those that are needed to keep global warming to between 1.5 °C and 2 °C by the end of the century. Global scale and farm scale analyses are used to evaluate both the effectiveness of different policy options to reduce agricultural emissions, and the impact on competitiveness, farm income, food security, and government finances. In order to contribute to global mitigation efforts, countries will need to design agricultural policy measures that can navigate these trade-offs within the context of their national policy priorities and objectives. As most countries have not yet implemented policies to reduce emissions from agriculture, the analyses provided here come at an opportune time to inform this policy development.


Farm-level analysis of mitigation policies for agriculture

A quantitative bio-economic farm model was developed to assess the cost-effectiveness of key GHG mitigation policy instruments to reduce emissions from crop and livestock production. Six policy instruments are examined and applied to farm cases in the European Union. The results show high abatement costs in mixed dairy and crop production when aiming for large GHG emission reductions and confirm that market-based policy instruments (GHG emission tax, GHG abatement subsidy, and cap-and-trade scheme) are the most cost-effective policy options. The results also show that policy instruments that target all GHG emissions from farms are more cost-effective than those that target only a subset of emissions or proxies of emissions, even when higher transaction costs of those policy instruments targeting all GHG emissions are accounted for.


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