A conference on the role of organic agriculture in the fight against climate-change, held at the Biodiversity Park at Expo Milano 2015, was the occasion for some considerations: food for thought. The meeting, chaired by the Italian meteorologist Luca Lombroso, was organized by the action network “Organic can feed the Planet”.
Eric Gall, of the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements, gave some figures related to the agricultural sector by highlighting how it is responsible for 10% of total CO2 emissions. This is why the debate has increasingly focused on two major issues: climate and food security, which is how to have food for all while respecting the Earth. European agriculture sector is no exception, where “the majority of emissions and sources of pollution is caused by the use of fertilizers and pesticides”, he said.
According to Eduardo Aguilera Fernandez, researcher at the University of Seville, organic farming is a strong ally in the fight against climate change. The greenhouse gas emissions caused by organic agriculture are not only much lower “for each hectare of land cultivated or per kilogram of product than conventional farming, but we see even cases in which the organic product reaches neutrality”, which means no CO2 emissions at all.
The Mediterranean area is increasingly developing organic farming systems on a large scale. According to Paola Migliorini, Vice President of the “International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements AgriBioMediterraneo”, there are 5 million bio hectares in the Mediterranean region with more than 200 thousand farms operating in there. In a research conducted by Migliorini, Italian lands organically grown between 2003 and 2007 increasing their ability to absorb CO2 compared to land cultivated with conventional systems, with peaks of 58 per cent in reference to each cultivated hectare and more than 60 percent for each kilogram of crop.
Source: Press Office Expo 2015