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Scientists root for agro-ecology

Zachary Makanya, the Participatory Ecological Land Use Management (PELUM) Kenya, country co-ordinator.

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • Agro-ecology provides farming techniques that use locally available inputs such as animal manure.
  • Farmers are rich in indigenous knowledge on sectors such as seeds, which can be of great use especially amid climate change.
  • Excessive use of agrochemicals is impacting negatively on human health and the environment.

Scientists are rooting for agroecological farming approaches to build affordable and resilient food systems.

They note that small-holder farmers can mitigate the impacts of climate change if they embrace agroecology principles, which include a diversified farming system that targets long-term sustainability of the environment and social livelihoods, leading to the production of safe and sufficient food.

“Having agro-ecology embedded in existing agricultural, food, environmental and climate change policies is important so that when implementation and budgetary allocations are made for such policies, agro-ecology can also be part of it,” said Mary Nyasimi,  the executive director of the Nairobi-based Inclusive Climate Change Adaptation for a Sustainable Africa.

Locally available inputs

Agro-ecology provides farming techniques that use locally available inputs such as animal manure.

William Odhiambo, 60, a farmer from Busia County, said due to the rising cost of farm inputs, using crop and animal manure is a sure way to cut costs, boost yields, and better the soil.

Zachary Makanya, the country coordinator of Participatory Ecological Land Use Management (PELUM) Kenya, which advocates for agroecological agriculture, says excessive use of agrochemicals is impacting negatively on human health and the environment.

He noted that farmers are rich in indigenous knowledge on sectors such as seeds, which can be of great use especially amid climate change.