During the workshop held on December 9, 2021 the results of the "Climate Risk and Vulnerability Assessment (CRVA) for Armenia’s Agriculture Sector" analysis conducted within the framework of the UNDP-GCF "Armenia’s National Adaptation Plan" (NAP) program were presented. The analysis was carried out by the Center for Agribusiness and Rural Development (CARD).
The study aimed to identify the sensitivity of agricultural sector and sub-sectors to climate risks and threats and possible adaptation opportunities in Armenia. The main purpose of the workshop and discussion was to prepare a basis for developing a strategy and an action plan for climate change adaptation in the agricultural sector of Armenia. Development of the sectoral adaptation plan is envisaged by the RA Government decision of May 13, 2021 No. 749-L on “Climate Change National Adaptation Action Plan and the List of Measures for 2021-2025” and scheduled for the year 2022.
UNDP Climate Change Programme Coordiator Diana Harutyunyan emphasized the importance of climate vulnerability and risk assessment and identification of relevant adaptation measures in agriculture, as a sector with significant contribution to the country’s GDP, as well as a crucial role for the sustainability of rural communities and food security.
“Compared to other economic sectors, agriculture is more vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, which we all are facing nowadays. Surveys and meetings we conduct in regional communities show that farmers themselves are aware of the changes in the sector, the increase of risks, and are convinced that their practices must be changed. Today, these operations and practices need significant changes in terms of efficiency as well, as both to import goods and to be competitive in the local market, to provide sufficient income for families, operations must be more economically viable, while climate change creates additional barriers for efficient and profitable activity. The development strategy of agriculture field includes climate change risks and emphasizes the importance of adaptation measures in greater depth than other sectors, however, it is extremely important that we be able to understand the clear range of actions needed to overcome the challenges in the field, the processes of their implementation and the sources of funding,” said Diana Harutyunyan.
Head of Department of Agricultural Programs Elaboration, Resource Use and Cooperative Development of the Ministry of Economy of RA Ira Panosyan noted that the Ministry attaches great importance to the discussions of the existing problems in the sector in the context of climate change and the proposals for concrete solutions and actions. She added that in the frame of discussions with the RA Ministry of Environment and UNDP the issue of developing a comprehensive concept of climate change adaptation and a comprehensive program of measures is being discussed.
“The Ministry of Economy is already implementing a number of programs aimed at climate change adaptation and risk mitigating, including the introduction of hail protection systems, agricultural insurance, the promotion of advanced irrigation technologies, greenhouses, and the use of smart livestock farming. The issue of introducing drought risk insurance in the field of agricultural insurance in 2022 is also being discussed, which in my opinion is a very important step in this direction, which will contribute to the development of the sector," said Ira Panosyan.
The participants were introduced to the methods and approaches to the climate vulnerability and risk assessment and adaptation strategy in Armenia’s agriculture sector, main results of studies based on key sector/subsector characteristics, , climate-related problems and adaptation methods. The Adaptation Strategy and Action Plan design process, structure, main objectives and directions of action were also discussed and presented.
Over 30 stakeholders including representatives of Ministries of Environment, Economy, governmental entities, UNDP, CARD Foundation, universities and international organizations attended the workshop and participated online.