For millennia, farming communities have faced climate fluctuations – dry spells, variable rainfall patterns, hurricanes, etc. Throughout it all they have developed intricate local knowledge around predicting and interpreting climate patterns and strategies to adapt to these stresses.
Today, climate conditions have become more extreme Climate Change. Conventional agriculture produces up to 30 per cent of the world’s greenhouse gases which contribute to increasingly challenging growing conditions.
USC Canada’s Seeds of Survival (SoS) Seeds of Survival program draws from farmers’ traditional knowledge using diversity as insurance against crop failures. By using locally adapted seeds and ecologically sound methods, small farmers are also reducing their greenhouse gas footprints. Ecological practices use less carbon energy and provide a carbon sink effect.
- Strengthening soil and water conservation (terracing, water harvesting, soil bands, etc.) to enhance soil fertility and make them less vulnerable to erosion and land degradation.
- Training in crop diversification, crop rotation, mixture cropping, multiple cropping and composting practices.
- Promoting agro-forestry and afforestation.
- Identifying community vulnerabilities and capacities to address climate change mitigation and adaptation through participatory action research.
- Facilitating the exchange of climate-resilient varieties, knowledge and practices among and between farming communities.