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A proposal for governance of sustainability in agriculture. Gérard Rass
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A proposal for governance of sustainability in agriculture. Gérard Rass


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A presentation at the WCCA 2011 event in Brisbane.

A presentation at the WCCA 2011 event in Brisbane.

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  • 1. A proposal for governance of sustainability in agriculture Brisabne, Wordl Congress of Conservation Agriculture, Sept 2011 APAD, Gérard Rass
  • 2.
    • Farmers need and want to progress towards sustainability
      • Obtain the best possible results of their farms, improving their operations on :
          • Economics
          • Social responsibility
          • Environmental responsibility
      • Maintain their freedom to operate and innovate
      • This can be obtained with an effective stakeholder dialog with citizens (and thus policy makers) :
        • shared and agreed objectives : production, prices, trade-offs with other dossiers (space, biodiversity, resources, energy…)
        • common relevant criteria : indicators of sustainability, assessing situation and progresses
  • 3.
    • The Institute for Sustainable Agriculture (IAD) is identifying and using indicators able to measure the results of farming practices on the ecological services and sustainability criteria.
    • Agricultural sustainability is defined by its ability to maintain over time :
        • an economically viable and competitive,
        • socially equitable
        • and environmentally‐friendly agricultural production.
    • About environment, sustainable agriculture produces :
      • biodiversity,
      • soil quality
      • water quality,
      • potential to adapt to climate change, control greenhouse effect,
      • potential to produce renewable energy.
  • 4.
    • IAD indicators : how they have been made and what they bring
    • The indicators were selected in 2008, internationally and locally, based on criteria of relevance, neutrality, occurrence and result measurement.
    • Ultimately, after 2 years testing on 160 farms, we settled a scorecard and dashboard made of 26 indicators grouped into 7 themes.
    • In IAD report : « Agriculture 2050 starts here and now », are explained :
        • The model of sustainable farming production
        • The criteria for Sustainable Production
        • The ecosystem services
        • A mechanisms of PES (Payment for Ecological Services)
  • 5.
    • The model : based on the 3 fundamental functions of the ecosystem
  • 6.
    • 26 indicators assessing the key relevant parameters of farming activity
    • Theme 1: economic viability
      • EBITDA per ha and/or per livestock unit
      • EBITDA/labour unit
      • Production costs per ha or livestockunit
    • Theme 2: social viability
      • Full‐time equivalent working hours
      • (1,800 hours/year)
      • SI ‐ Satisfaction Index
    • Theme 3: efficiency of input use
      • IFT ‐ Pesticide treatment frequency index
      • NPK balance (nitrogen ‐ phosphorous ‐ potassium)
      • Energy balance
      • Energy independence rate
      • Water consumption (irrigation)
      • Food autonomy rate
      • Yield ha, livestock farm
  • 7.
    • IAD Indicators (continued)
    • Topic 4: Greenhouse gas
      • GHG level
    • Theme 5: soil quality
      • Yield/ha UAA
      • Yield/ha main fodder area
      • Soil tillage index
      • Annual soil cover rate
      • Organic matter level
      • Soil biological activity
    • Theme 6: water quality
      • NO3 level ‐ boreholes and wells
      • NO3 level – rivers
    • Theme 7: biodiversity
      • Soil utilisation
      • Biodiversity surface area
      • Crop diversity
      • STOC "birds" (common bird mapping)
      • STERC "insects" (common insect mapping)
    19 of these indicators are able to measure directly or indirectly the ecological services in accordance with the scientific references available in the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment
  • 8.
    • Scorecards for sustainable agriculture indicators
  • 9.
    • IAD indicators measure part of the ecological services identified by the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment
  • 10.
    • From theory to practice in setting up environmental payments for ecological services. Adaptation of the Pagiola and Platais (2006) scheme for agriculture.
  • 11.
    • Mechanism of Payment for Ecological Services (PES) example on APAD farms with 12 indicators
  • 12.
    • Results after 3 years :
    • 160 farms assessed,
    • Several partners from supply or food industry involved to use IAD indicators,
    • 3 high level international conferences on Sustainable Agriculture in Senate in Paris, with high level official sponsors, and international speakers of CA community (thanks to them !).
    • Report Agriculture 2050 circulated among french experts and Government, in EU Parliament and Commission.
    • Some recognition in France for IAD indicators of Sustainable Agriculture, and thus CA
    • Engagement of more stakeholders into IAD
  • 13.
    • Stakehlders : everyone is involved in designing sustainable agriculture, but with different functions
    Citizens / Policy makers No-Till Farmers Food industry Food Feed industry Soil management Fertilizers Genetics Machinery Plant protection
  • 14.
    • Farmers have engaged some supply companies
    IAD To improve results on farms
  • 15.
    • IAD has engaged food / feed industry into supoort to sustainable agriculture
    Citizens / Policy makers WEST cluster (*) To serve consumers demand WEST : Well Eating Sustainable Territory No-Till Farmers Food industry Food Feed industry Soil management Fertilizers Genetics Machinery Plant protection
  • 16.
    • This project is partaken with some Members of European Parliament
    To enable good policies, & give the signal from the top ECAF
  • 17.
    • We need to reinforce our capacity to influence for SA and CA at European level
    • A European Council for Sustainable Agriculture in Brussels,
    • with 3 pilars (IAD model) :
    • Farmers : ECAF farmers from key EU countries,
        • to drive, and advocate with the legitimacy of their results and practical experience,
    • CA Scientists :
      • to support scientific debates, and fight objections of local scientists,
          • ECAF experts
          • international CA community (=> you ),
          • supported by high reputation international agencies (United Nation)
    • Private companies :
      • input industries, machinery, fertilizer, crop protection, genetics…, supporting CA.
      • Include IAD and WEST cluster (food and feed industries)
  • 18.
    • Missions of the European Council for Sustainable Agriculture
    • Monitor EU and national policies :
          • Audit their performances vs sustainability criteria
          • Publish reports and recommendations to policy makers
    • Advocate for CA to EU Parliament and Commission
    • Make local missions and audits, on demand :
      • ex : water quality in France,
    • Provide data and studies when needed (ex : C credits…)
    • Participate in studies (tender bids from EU : ex : indicators)
    • Provide to local operators :
        • strategic advices,
        • speakers for conferences,
        • communication with media
  • 19.
    • But we need also a global governance of agriculture, environment, social, economics…
    • A global approach of sustainability across geographies,
      • Ex : social responsibility, C sequestration assessment, fair trade, anti-dumping, trade-offs food, energy, biodiversity, water use…
    • A base of common set of principles and criteria :
      • a global set of indicators ? Cf Millenium Ecosystem Assessment
    • A common platform for dialog between geographies and operators :
      • a global council for SA ?
  • 20. The challenge for sustainability is global. It needs a global governance. We shall loose or win together. Thank you [email_address] 33 6 07 40 42 59 [email_address]