Monitoring the impacts of urban agriculture on climate change adaptation and mitigation in cities

RUAF Foundation brought together a group of international and local ​scientists to jointly design indicators and tools to measure the various impacts of urban agriculture and forestry on climate change adaptation and mitigation and related developmental co-benefits. The draft monitoring framework was field tested in cooperation with local and provincial authorities, NGOs and universities in 4 cities: Kesbewa (Sri Lanka), Rosario (Argentina), Kathmandu (Nepal) and Bobo Dioulassou (Burkina Faso). Research results were used to facilitate policy uptake. The project was supported by CDKN and UN Habitat-Cities and Climate Change Initiative.

Duration: 3 years

Funding: Climate and Development Knowledge Network (CDKN, UK) and project partners, co-funding from UN Habitat-Cities and Climate Change Initiative.

Project partners: RUAF Foundation (coordination, the Netherlands); Applied Plant Research International of the Wageningen University and Research Centre (The Netherlands); School of Forestry of the University of Florida (USA); The International Water Management Institute (Sri Lanka);  The Ministry of Agriculture, Agrarian Development, Minor Irrigation, Industries and Environment of Western Province (Sri Lanka); Kesbewa Urban Council (Sri Lanka); The Ministry of Water, Public Services and Environment, Santa Fe Province (Argentina); Municipality of Rosario (Argentina); Institute of Physics – CONICET Rosario (Argentina); The National University of Rosario (Argentina); Comune de Bobo Dioulasso (Burkina Faso); l'Institut d'Application et de Vulgarisation en Sciences (Burkina Faso); Kathmandu Metropolitan City Office (Nepal); Institute for Social and Environmental Transition (Nepal).

Activities:

  • Design of a draft monitoring framework with clear indicators and simple yet robust tools for the monitoring of the impacts of Urban and Peri-urban Agriculture and Forestry (UPAF)​ on climate change adaptation;  mitigation and developmental benefits.
  • Field testing of the draft monitoring framework in UPAF projects in 4 cities: Kesbewa (Sri Lanka), Rosario (Argentina), Kathmandu (Nepal) and Bobo Dioulassou (Burkina Faso) (field testing in the latter two cities was funded by the UN-HABITAT -Cities and Climate Change programme).    
  • In two cities (Kesbewa and Rosario):  the design of alternative scenarios for the development of urban food systems in that city, and the calculation of expected impacts of each scenario (food-miles, emissions and energy use), as a basis for local decision making and planning.
  • Facilitation of the integration of UPAF as a component of the city and provincial climate change and urban development strategies and securing adequate follow-up actions amongst others by training local researchers and local government staff on UPAF models, their inclusion in climate change programmes and the monitoring of their impacts.
  • Dissemination of project results (project synthesis report describing project outcomes; the monitoring framework).

Results obtained:

  • A field-tested conceptual and methodological framework for the monitoring of the impacts of urban agriculture and forestry on climate change adaptation and mitigation and a number of developmental co-benefits (food security, income, eco-system services).
  • Enhanced capacities of the local project partners regarding monitoring of the impacts of UPAF
  • Established south-south-north partnerships in this area.
  • The uptake of UPAF in local and provincial climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies has been secured  by involving policy makers in monitoring activities; the development of scenarios for urban food systems and by training local staff in the inclusion of locally appropriate UPAF-models in the city/provincial climate change strategy as well as in other urban policies.
  • The project results have been widely disseminated to decision makers and planners in cities taking part in climate change programmes and networks, and to the academic community.  

Reports:

Monitoring guidelines:

Research reports from Rosario, Argentina:

Research reports from Kesbewa, Sri Lanka:

Policy Briefs and outputs:

The following articles have been produced: