NAIROBI, Kenya: May 19, 2022 – The President of AGRA, Dr. Agnes Kalibata, has been selected as one of 16 eminent members of the Climate Overshoot Commission.
She joins former heads of government, national ministers, environmental leaders, and high-level international officials, who will evaluate additional approaches for reducing the climate risks of overshoot in an integrated way.
The Climate Overshoot Commission was formed upon the realization that global warming is fast approaching the 1.5 degrees Celsius goal of the Paris Agreement, an ‘overshoot’ of that goal is likely within the next decade.
The Commission, which is chaired by former World Trade Organisation Director General Pascal Lamy, will balance the potential, costs and risks of enhanced adaptation, carbon dioxide removal, and sunlight reflection against the serious impacts of a warming world.
The commissioners will meet six times over the next fifteen months – starting in Italy, New York and Egypt – to prepare a strategy that will be unveiled before the UN Climate Change Conference (COP28) of 2023. The expected strategy will be evidence-based, just, and promote equitable approaches for reducing risk in a dangerously warming world.
“Rising global temperatures are already creating challenges for global food systems. Africa’s smallholder farmers are facing adverse consequences as a result of fluctuating weather patterns. We are seeing this in droughts, floods, mudslides, and pest attacks across Africa. This Commission brings together leaders to work together in advocating for action that can prevent climate overshoot and develop appropriate response strategies to reverse global warming and limit the impacts of worsening climate change,” said Dr. Kalibata, who served as the UN Secretary General’s Special Envoy for the UN Food Systems Summit in 2021.
Dr. Kalibata brings to the Commission a wealth of experience from her involvement in agricultural and food systems, both as a successful minister of agriculture (Rwanda) and as the leader of AGRA.
In both these roles, and many others, she has led the development of strategies enabling farmers adapt to the vagaries of climate change, in addition to mitigating further damage. Her contribution to finding global solutions to end hunger has seen her win numerous awards and international recognition, including the prestigious Africa Food Prize, an honorary doctorate from the University of Liège, and the National Academy of Sciences’ Public Welfare Medal, amongst many others.
AGRA is a farmer-centered, African-led, partnerships-driven institution that is working to transform smallholder farming from a solitary struggle to survive to a business that thrives. In collaboration with its partners—including African governments, researchers, development partners, the private sector and civil society— AGRA’s work primarily focuses on smallholder farmers – women and men who typically cultivate staple crops on two hectares or less. AGRA is now recognized across the continent as a strong voice for African rural development, a prosperous agricultural economy, and for supporting thousands of small African businesses and millions of African families to improve agriculture to ensure food security and improve their livelihoods.