ubai, United Arab Emirates, 3 December 2024 – Professor Patrick Verkooijen, CEO of the Global Center on Adaptation and Dr. Simeon Ehui, Director General, International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) and Regional Director for Africa, CGIAR have committed to work together to scale up agricultural innovation for climate adaptation at a partnership signing witnessed by Macky Sall, President of Senegal; Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, President of the African Development Bank Group; Roger Voorhies, President of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation; Nardos Bekele-Thomas, Chief Executive Officer of the Africa Union Development Agency- New Partnerships for Africa’s Development; Rémy Rioux, CEO of the Agence Française de Développement and Dr. Vijay Rangarajan, Director-General, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, UK.
CGIAR is the world’s largest global agricultural innovation network created to provide evidence to policymakers, innovation to partners, and new tools to harness the economic, environmental and nutritional power of agriculture.
GCA will work with the CGIAR system to set up a conveyor belt to ensure the many agricultural innovations for climate adaptation and resilience developed by CGIAR centers are effectively integrated into the portfolio of the largest financiers in Africa, including international finance institutions (IFIs) such as the African Development Bank, the World Bank, and others for rapid implementation at scale. This will be achieved through the Africa Adaptation Acceleration Program (AAAP), the world’s largest adaptation initiative led by the African Development Bank (AfDB), the African Union Commission, and the Global Center on Adaptation.
During the signing ceremony, Professor Patrick Verkooijen, CEO of the Global Center on Adaptation said: “More productive land in Africa could create a food and agribusiness economy worth $1 trillion by 2030 and turn the continent from a net importer of food into a net exporter. Climate-smart solutions for food production are already reaching tens of thousands of farmers. But to climate-proof agriculture across the continent, we need to reach millions more. CGIAR has a promising range of climate-adaptation tools, strategies, and innovations but what it needs is large-scale investment to roll them out to farmers across the continent.”
Dr. Simeon Ehui, Director General, IITA and Regional Director for Africa, CGIAR said:
“As the Director General of IITA and Regional Director of CGIAR for Continental Africa, I am deeply honored to join hands with the Global Center on Adaptation in this groundbreaking initiative. The convergence of CGIAR’s extensive research and innovation in agriculture with GCA’s robust adaptation strategies marks a transformative step towards securing food security and climate resilience in Africa.”
“Our collective efforts will focus on integrating advanced agricultural technologies and practices to empower African farmers, ensuring that our continent not only adapts to climate challenges but also thrives economically and environmentally. This collaboration is a testament to our shared commitment to harness the power of agriculture as a key driver in Africa’s journey towards a sustainable and prosperous future.”
“With the worsening food security and climate crisis, it is imperative to recognize the critical importance of continuing to support and increase funding for CGIAR and our partners for our work on agriculture and research.”
The Global Center on Adaptation (GCA) estimates that just $15 billion per year would be enough to pay for better water management, infrastructure, land restoration, and climate information services across Africa. These adaptation actions in agriculture typically generate $5 in benefits for every $1 invested, according to the GCA. That is because climate adaptation, done well and on a large scale, generates a cascade of positive economic, social, and environmental benefits. Moreover, the costs of inaction are ten times higher than the cost of action.
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About the Global Center on Adaptation
The Global Center on Adaptation (GCA) is an international organization that works as a solutions broker to accelerate action and support for adaptation solutions, from the international to the local, in partnership with the public and private sectors. Founded in 2018, GCA operates from the largest floating office in the world, located in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. GCA has a worldwide network of regional offices in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire; Dhaka, Bangladesh, and Beijing, China, and is opening a new office in Nairobi, Kenya in 2025.
About the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA)
IITA is a not-for-profit institution that generates agricultural innovations to meet Africa’s most pressing challenges of hunger, malnutrition, poverty, and natural resource degradation. Working with various partners across Africa, we improve livelihoods, enhance food and nutrition security, increase employment, and preserve natural resource integrity. IITA is a member of CGIAR, a global agriculture research partnership for a food-secure future.
CGIAR is a global research partnership and agriculture innovation network for a food-secure future. CGIAR science is dedicated to transforming food, land, and water systems in a climate crisis. Its research is carried out by 13 CGIAR Centers/Alliances in close collaboration with hundreds of partners, including national and regional research institutes, civil society organizations, academia, development organizations and the private sector. We would like to thank all Funders who support this research through their contributions to the CGIAR Trust Fund.