Festival della Diplomazia
Lecture on "Climate Changes and Sustainable Development", 26 October 2017, Centro Studi Americani, Roma
"In a world characterized by more and more challenges mostly due to climate change, farming should be seen as a tool of producing wealth as well as being a cultural value for all human beings."
“Who would like to be a farmer?” When Roberto Ridolfi, Director for Sustainable Growth and Development at DG Development and Cooperation, asked this question during the 'Festival della Diplomazia', no young person who was attending the event answered positively.
However, in a world characterized by more and more challenges mostly due to climate change, farming should be seen as a tool of producing wealth as well as being a cultural value for all human beings.
The lecture on Climate Changes and Sustainable Development which was held on 26 October 2017 at ‘Centro Studi Americani’ in Rome, was about increasing awareness of the several inequalities, climate and technological shocks which are changing the current landscape in which people live. As claimed by the economist and professor Enrico Giovannini, the economic growth is forecast to be lower in the future and one solution could be provided by the creation of a new development paradigm involving the principles of integrity, universality and participation. The international community started to move in this direction in December 2015, with the adoption of the 2030 Agenda and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals which have been used as general framework for external and internal policies.
In the same way, IFAD President Gilbert Houngbo reiterated the need to create strategies of development which can foster the protection of farmers and smallholders. Producing the 80% of food in Africa and Asia, they are as well the primary targets of the fragility caused by climate-related events. Houngbo and Ridolfi highlighted the necessity of implementing an integrated approach based on SDGs and remarked the value enclosed in the concepts of conservation, agroforestry, biodiversity and insurance.
Finally, the principle of resilience has been the key word of the entire discussion. The answer to the climate change challenges and to the possibility of sustainable development could be found in the assumption of an adaptive scheme of reaction to the main shocks. Creating a resilient society and environment, based on the achievement of SDGs and on the capacity of adapting and taking care of climate issues, it would be possible to tackle the current challenges.
If all these factors were taken into account and if dialogue and communication were improved, awareness would presumably enhance in the society and among young people and the answer to the initial question of Ridolfi would be different.