Reconciling global sustainability targets and regional action for food security and climate change mitigation

Juliana Dias Bernardes Gil, V. Daioglou, M.K. van Ittersum, P. Reidsma, D. van Vuuren

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract


The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) imply country-led implementation, however their success depends on the reconciliation of sustainability targets across different sectors and scales. Ensuring consistency between climate mitigation efforts and national agricultural policies is no trivial task and may involve significant trade-offs. Our study examines how the GHG emission intensity of agriculture (EIA) should evolve globally, regionally (Western Europe) and nationally (The Netherlands) under different socioeconomic pathways, so that the major aims of SDG-2 (i.e. food security) and SDG-13 (i.e. 2oC climate mitigation target) are achieved simultaneously. Results show that, by 2050, relative to 2010 values, EIA should decrease at all three levels –both when measured on a land basis (MtCO2eq/ha) and on a product basis (MtCO2eq/tonDM). Concerning the Dutch agricultural sector, the comparison of current and projected CH4 and N2O emission levels related to enteric fermentation, manure management and agricultural soils reveals the need for significantly more ambitious policy targets. Over 2010-30, assuming that food production remains constant, our model indicates that Dutch agricultural GHG emissions must decrease by 26% in absolute terms and 28% in EIA-product terms; however, the extrapolation of today’s trends may ensure a reduction of no more than 5% and 8%, respectively. Besides shedding light on the interaction between climate and agricultural strategies, our analysis illustrates the application of cross-scale thinking in the operationalization of the SDG agenda and constitutes a step forward in bridging bottom-up and top-down research
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2018
Event7th AgMIP Global Worskhop - San José, Costa Rica
Duration: 24 Apr 201826 Apr 2018


Workshop7th AgMIP Global Worskhop
CountryCosta Rica
CitySan José
Internet address


Dive into the research topics of 'Reconciling global sustainability targets and regional action for food security and climate change mitigation'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this