Climate change poses unprecedented challenges to farmers, who must produce enough food to feed a growing population—expected to reach 9 billion by 2050—with a richer diet. Farmers will have to adapt their current practices to a different climate marked by extreme weather events and changing season patterns.

Farmers in developing countries, often among the poorest, are particularly vulnerable to the effects of climate change. Poor and vulnerable farming communities might need support to grow their incomes while also being resilient to an uncertain future. With the right tools to produce more food sustainably and access to more consistent sources of income to meet basic needs (food, clothing and shelter), they have a chance to thrive.

At the same time, agricultural emissions, direct and indirect, account for about one-third of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions globally. Agriculture can contribute to the sequestration or reduction of GHG emissions by taking advantage of already-existing practices and technologies or by adopting new ones and farmers might from the positive co-benefits of mitigation—including better nutrition, increased production and income.

Climate Change Research

Researchers at the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) and their many country collaborators are dedicated to helping farmers with the challenges posed by a changing climate. Our work covers global, country, and farm level analyses and uses sophisticated water, crop, and economic models to assess the impact of climate change on agricultural activities. Based on these analyses, researchers at IFPRI identify technologies, tools, incentives, and policies that help smallholders to grow food, care for the earth and improve their livelihoods in the process.