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Improving environmental sustainability of livestock systems in the developing world

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Presented by Jimmy Smith at the Agri4D annual conference on agricultural research for development, Uppsala, Sweden, 25−26 September 2013

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Improving environmental sustainability of livestock systems in the developing world

  1. 1. Improving environmental sustainability of livestock systems in the developing world Agri4D annual conference on agricultural research for development Uppsala, Sweden, 25−26 September 2013 Jimmy Smith, ILRI Director General
  2. 2. Key messages • Smallholder livestock systems can help us meet the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), including those related to: – Reducing environmental harms – Exploiting environmental opportunities • Different trajectories of livestock systems in developing countries are opportunities for: - Improving natural resource use efficiency - Restoring value to grasslands - Reducing harmful livestock waste
  3. 3. Livestock and the sustainable development goals
  4. 4. Sustainable Development Goals 01 End poverty 02 Empower girls and women and achieve gender equity 03 Provide quality education and lifelong learning 04 Ensure healthy lives 05 Ensure food security and good nutrition 06 Achieve universal access to water and sanitation 07 Secure sustainable energy 08 Create jobs, sustainable livelihoods and equitable growth 09 Manage natural resource assets sustainably 10 Ensure good governance and effective institutions 11 Ensure stable and peaceful societies 12 Create a global enabling environment & catalyze long term finance
  5. 5. Livestock and the Sustainable Development Goals 01 End poverty  02 Empower girls and women and achieve gender equity  03 Provide quality education and lifelong learning 04 Ensure healthy lives  05 Ensure food security and good nutrition  06 Achieve universal access to water and sanitation [] 07 Secure sustainable energy [] 08 Create jobs, sustainable livelihoods and equitable growth  09 Manage natural resource assets sustainably  10 Ensure good governance and effective institutions 11 Ensure stable and peaceful societies 12 Create a global enabling environment & catalyze long term finance
  6. 6. Reduce poverty with livestock: SDG01 • 1 billion people rely on livestock for their livelihoods • Livestock give poor households reliable cash income • Livestock demand is highest in developing countries - Over 50% increase in demand for milk, meat, eggs in the next three decades in developing countries
  7. 7. Empower women with livestock: SDG02 • Women undertake up to 70% of agricultural work in many parts of the world • Almost two-thirds of the world’s 1 billion poor livestock keepers are rural women • In the Gambia: 52% of sheep owners, 67% of goat owners, are women • In Chiapas, Mexico: sheep husbandry is women’s business • In Afghanistan: traditional poultry raising is carried out entirely by women
  8. 8. Ensure healthy lives with livestock: SDG04 • Animal-source foods (meat, milk, eggs) present food safety risks • 60% of human infectious diseases and 75% of other emerging diseases (e.g., bird flu), are ‘zoonotic’ (come from animals) • ‘Top 13′ zoonoses each year kill 2.2 million people and make 2.4 billion people ill • We need better disease surveillance, animal husbandry and marketing; risk-rather than rule-based health controls; pro-poor policies.
  9. 9. Ensure food/nutrition security with livestock: SDG05 • Milk, meat, eggs provide essential protein, energy, micronutrients • Consumption of even small amounts of animal-source foods: - combats under-nutrition - improves cognitive development - increases physical growth • Developing countries lead in global food production - 500 million smallholders support more than 2 billion people - smallholder crop-livestock systems produce about 50% of global food Conway 2012; Herrero et al. in press
  10. 10. Enable sustainable livelihoods with livestock: SDG06 • Livestock make cropping possible, and sustain it over the longer term • Smallholder producers are competitive: More than 85% of Kenyan milk is produced by 1 million smallholders • Livestock provide means for women to earn incomes, for households to save and build assets, for farmers to plough their land
  11. 11. Manage natural resources with livestock: SDG07 • Livestock are a main user of land and source of GHGs • Importance of manure: 23% of nitrogen for crop production comes from manure • Crop residues contribute up to 70% of the diets of ruminant animals in developing countries • Grass still makes up 50% of all the biomass consumed by the world’s livestock • We can improve livestock efficiencies in poor countries without moving to industrial grain-fed systems
  12. 12. Livestock and the environment
  13. 13. Smallholder livestock keepers and the environment Livestock as CAUSE? Livestock as SOLUTION? Livestock as VICTIM?
  14. 14. Global greenhouse gas efficiency per kilogram of animal protein produced Large livestock production inefficiencies in the developing world present an opportunity Herrero et al PNAS (in press)
  15. 15. Growth scenarios for the livestock sector Strong growth Fragile growth High growth with externalities
  16. 16. Waste to worth Different trajectories demand different environmental solutions Strong growth Fragile growth High growth Restoring value to grassland Closing the efficiency gap
  17. 17. Closing the efficiency gap
  18. 18. Production efficiency – developed countries Source: Capper et al., 2009 Feed, breed, health = 4 fold milk increase
  19. 19. Possible GHG opportunities • Develop capacity for quantifying GHG emissions from agricultural sources • Develop ILRI into a ‘competence centre‘ for GHG measurements in Africa • Build network of GHG labs across Africa and elsewhere to allow developing countries to obtain country-specific information about their agricultural GHG emissions • Identify pro-poor mitigation options for smallholder agriculture in the developing world
  20. 20. Developing countries can mitigate GHG emissions without moving to industrial grain-fed systems: e.g., through improved efficiencies (e.g., better feeds and feeding systems) Feed opportunities
  21. 21. Water opportunities Feed, water and livestock management; integrated crop- livestock systems 0 0.05 0.1 0.15 0.2 0.25 0.3 0.35 local breed (natural pasture) cross bred (natural pasture) local breed (sorghum) cross bred (sorghum) livestock water productivity $/m3 (for milk)
  22. 22. Restoring value to grasslands
  23. 23. Potential carbon sequestration by 2040 Source: adapted from: Thornton and Herrero, PNAS (2010)
  24. 24. Potential carbon sequestration (Tg C/yr) in global rangelands by grazing severity and continent Light Moderate Strong Extreme Total Africa Australia/Pa cific Eurasia North America South America Total 1.9 4.5 0.8 0 6.1 13.3 8.6 -0.1 3.2 1.6 11.3 24.4 6.1 0.0 0.6 0.7 7.4 0.1 0.3 0.4 16.7 4.4 4.3 2.2 18.1 45.7 Moderate grazing improves carbon storage Source: Conant and Paustian 2002
  25. 25. Pay livestock keepers for wildlife conservation Payments for wildlife conservation can provide pastoral communities with income to pay for livestock vaccines, food and school fees
  26. 26. Pay livestock keepers for environmental services Payments for environmental services may help developing countries ‘green’ their livestock sectors through better climate regulation, watershed management and biodiversity conservation
  27. 27. Waste to worth
  28. 28. Manure problems/management Manure problems • Livestock disconnected from land in intensive systems • Concentrated livestock produces local nutrient overloads • Handling manure is difficult • Anaerobic digestion can have trade-offs Manure management • Technical solutions are available but need to be tailored • Better integration of livestock-crop farming • Improved composting • Recovering nutrients and other valuables • Biogas production (fermentation) • Manure refinery (bio-enzymes)
  29. 29. Opportunities for manure management • Manage manure and nutrient cycling to maximize the use of nutrients and capture of methane • Make and support policy and institutional changes that promote responsible waste management • Improve breeds to reduce GHG emissions from manure Source: Butterbach-Bahl, 2012
  30. 30. Key messages • Smallholder livestock systems can help us meet the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), including those related to: – Reducing environmental harms – Exploiting environmental opportunities • Different trajectories of livestock systems in developing countries are opportunities for: - Improving natural resource use efficiency - Restoring value to grasslands - Reducing harmful livestock waste
  31. 31. Conclusions Opportunities to address environmental issues through research livestock development are huge − and as yet largely untapped

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