He also said, India’s soil health card is not effective as the way it is, and emphasized soil mapping
Nirmesh Singh | New Delhi | 18 Nov 2019
The issue of climatic change is complicated and only better statistics statistical information and innovative tools will lead to better management of climatic change and mitigate the destructive impact of climate change on agriculture, billionaire philanthropist and Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates on Monday said in his keynote address at the 8th global conference on agri-statistics.
“The biggest challenge today is climate change at a time when we need to increase production & food availability. The work that statisticians do is very critical to face this challenge. Understanding how climate change is affecting crops, the productivity and how we can adopt & adapt to these changes is going to require the best statistics, including use of new digital tools ” Gates added.
The four-day global conference was inaugurated by Union Agriculture & Farmers Welfare Minister Narendra Singh Tomar and is being organised by the agriculture ministry in partnership with the United Nation’s FAO, the US Department of Agriculture, the World Bank, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and other agencies.
Gates also pointed out, India’s soil health card is not effective as the way it is and expressed unhappiness over the way the soil samples given by farmers were processed in laboratory.
He emphasized the need of ‘soil mapping’ and said, scientists should collect soil samples from some fields of a region and test it rather than a farmer collecting soil from individual field and taking it to the laboratories.
“Innovation for better soil, seeds, livestock, better information and better statistics will help minimise the damage of climate change. Different interventions are required to be taken including developing new variety of seeds and their distribution to poorest farmer.,” he added.
Noting that small land holding farmers which are over 2 billion people out of the whole 7 billion of the planet, are most affected by the climate change across the world, Gates said these farmers are very poor and require support as their agricultural output is diminishing because of the climate change effects and climatic disasters like droughts and floods wipe out all their savings.
“The intensity and frequency of both drought and flood is going to change. The effects of climate change will increase,” he said adding that this is also an issue in India.