Paraguay: Proposed sustainable agriculture to mitigate climate change in the Gran Chaco

Implement sustainable agriculture in the Gran Chaco is a solution to mitigate the adverse effects of climate change on agricultural production in the region , the third major biogeographical territory of Latin America, according to a study released in Paraguay .

The report , prepared by the Paraguayan NGO, Development Institute is a program of adaptation to climate change in the countries in which is distributed the Gran Chaco ( Argentina , Bolivia and Paraguay ) .

The investigation of its impact on agricultural production and water resources based on climate forecasts to 2040 .

“The stage provided until this year  indicates that the amount of rainfall in the Gran Chaco is the same as now, but more precipitation will fall over short periods of time and in places where it did not rain ,” said Rossana Scribano , coordinator of study.

The work, which takes into account the scenarios provided by the Intercontinental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) recommends the implementation of agroforestry systems, to stop deforestation as a way to enable grazing areas for cattle, one of the main industries the Gran Chaco.

Also committed to the creation of native seed banks, especially maize and beans , as were traditionally used by indigenous communities.

According to the study, these proposals have to be combined with better use of water, such as the construction of canals to slow the deterioration caused by climate change on the hydrological system.

“The land of the Gran Chaco is mostly flat plain, and absorbs most of the rain fall, so it is necessary to refer you to deposit or farms across channels,” said Scribano.

The expert specified that the mitigation of climate change fall properly to governments and recommended the development of weather warning systems and fluid contact with the populations of the region.

Scribano added that deforestation afflicting the Gran Chaco is one of the added damage to climate change, a problem that could only be tackled by reforestation with native trees.

“To less trees, there are more gases accumulation  , hence more greenhouse gases and increased sedimentation in the canals of water,” said the coordinator of the work.

The Gran Chaco lost 539,233 hectares of forest in 2013 due to agricultural and livestock farms, mainly in Paraguay and Argentina, as released in January the environmental organization Guyra Paraguay.

Scribano noted that Argentina, which has 85% of the farms in the countries of the Gran Chaco, is the one with more and better means to adapt to the damage caused by climate change.

“Argentina has better adaptive systems, which have Paraguay and Bolivia, such as irrigation systems for droughts and silage for forage,” she said.

The NGO has submitted the study to the institutions and ministries of Argentina, which boasts 62% of land in the region of Gran Chaco of Paraguay with the 25.43% and Bolivia with 11.61%.

Source | EFE