COP28 Daily Wrap-up (Dec 10) – Farming and Food Systems

Briefing Room 11.12.23

Posted by Nature4Climate

Welcome to the COP endgame. The “trade show” is starting to wind down, with fewer people scrambling across Expo City to side events and an intense focus now on the negotiations. With the final package slowly coming together – and new text is expected this morning – the UAE Presidency convened a Majlis (which can mean a sitting room or a council in many Islamic countries) yesterday afternoon to promote compromise amid considerable divergence that remains related to the interlinkages between adaptation, finance and mitigation, with equity as a common theme. Expect developments to unfold rapidly in the period ahead.

On the Article 6 front, a range of elements have been removed from the text, including around guaranteeing minimum standards of transparency and accountability, no limit to confidentiality, no consequences to inconsistencies, no sequencing, no definitions, and allowing unrestricted changes to authorisations. This represents a battle between those Parties – led by the US – that are seeking a light touch, no frills approach, allowing countries more flexibility in terms of how they cooperate, and those Parties – led by the EU – that are seeking tighter controls to ensure that credits traded between countries actually reduce emissions without causing other environmental or social issues.

Outside the negotiations, it was Food, Agriculture and Water Day, addressing global food systems and promoting water security to keep 1.5°C within reach. Joao Campari, Global Food Practice Leader, WWF summed it up nicely: “Food systems transformation has certainly been a core agenda item at COP28. What started as a few voices on the margins of COPs just a couple of years ago has crescendoed to a summit-wide day of pledges and announcements.” Indeed, more than 200 events took place examining the shift to sustainable, just, resilient, net-zero-aligned and nature-positive food systems; the need to scale up finance for smallholder farmers and other frontline communities; and the importance of addressing food systems, biodiversity, climate and health in a holistic manner.

The launch of the Alliance of Champions for Food Systems Transformation, as well as the FAO Roadmap, covered below, stood out as particularly significant breakthroughs. Although, addressing the latter, many commentators, while welcoming the progress, pointed out that the Roadmap fell short of what is needed in terms of ambition to halt and reverse forest loss, as well as in acknowledging the need for meat consumption to be significantly reduced in the developed world. And jumping back into the negotiations, although ‘agriculture’ and ‘food’ have appeared in the Global Stocktake text, the language is still far from being ambitious enough, and it is insufficient to elevate food systems transformation as a key lever for climate mitigation and adaptation.

We’ve recapped key announcements below.

COP28 Daily Wrap-up – December 10


The FAO published its Roadmap for achieving 1.5 degrees and Zero Hunger (SDG2). This marks the first time the UN has established a global roadmap for how to align food systems with climate action. The first phase of the report, published yesterday, is global in scope. At COP29 the FAO will publish regional roadmaps, followed by national roadmaps at COP30.

Alliance of Champions for Food Systems Transformation (ACF) was launched, co-chaired by Brazil, Norway and Sierra Leone, alongside founding members Cambodia and Rwanda. They have committed to deliver better outcomes on food across adaptation and resilience, climate mitigation, food and nutrition security, equity and livelihoods, and nature and biodiversity. Each country is pledging to strengthen national actions to transform food systems, consistent with science-based targets. They are seeking to develop a “gold standard” approach to food systems transformation, addressing the food systems in their entirety, from production, processing, distribution and consumption to waste.

The COP28 Agriculture, Food and Climate Action Toolkit was released yesterday. It is a resource to help national policymakers translate global climate and food commitments into local actions. The Toolkit was produced by a taskforce – which included WWF, Global Alliance for the Future of Food, Climate Focus, NDC Partnership, the Food and Agriculture Organisation of United Nations, CGIAR and the Alliance of Bioversity International and CIAT – convened by the UAE COP28 Presidency.

The Emirates Declaration on Sustainable Agriculture, Resilient Food Systems and Climate Action has now been signed by more than 150 countries. The Call to Action for Transforming Food Systems for People, Nature and Climate has now been signed by more than 200 non-state actors across farmers and frontline communities, civil society, business, philanthropy and cities, each committing to 10 priority actions.

The Transforming Urban Rural Food Systems (TURFS) Consortium launched its Strategy for Food Systems Transformation at COP28 yesterday to empower and support cities to improve the way we produce and consume food in urban and rural areas.

The FAST (Food and Agriculture for Sustainable Transformation) Initiative launched at COP27 in Egypt held its inception meeting. The Initiative has three key aims – to improve access to climate finance and investment for food, to share knowledge and build capacity, and ensure food systems are embedded in climate policy. At the inception meeting, a Secretariat was established, the German Government pledged financial support to the Initiative and member states agreed to strengthen programme implementation and climate finance.

The AIM4Climate (Agriculture Innovation Mission for Climate) Initiative, a fund set up by the UAE and US, said funding had grown from US$8billion at this time last year to US$ 17 billion.

Regen10 released its Zero Draft Outcomes-Based Framework. The report outlines the work Regen10 is undertaking to develop a farmer-centric, outcomes-based framework that supports the transition to regenerative global food systems. When complete, the framework will provide a holistic set of outcomes, indicators and metrics to understand and measure change that happens over time on farms and across landscapes.

CGIAR and World Food Programme launched the Stability Peace Accelerator, a new partnership that will support food systems innovators in fragile contexts (in Nigeria, Mozambique, Yemen, Jordan) through science-driven entrepreneurship support and invite public and private stakeholders to collaborate, with the support of the African Development Bank (AfDB).

The Canadian Alliance for Net-Zero Agri-food (CANZA) was launched. CANZA is a new national alliance to foster collaboration and innovation to drive Canada’s agri-food system towards net-zero. It brings together stakeholders from across the agri-food system in support of a net-zero agri-food value chain.

Thirty-three countries signed up to The Freshwater Challenge. The Freshwater Challenge (FWC) is a country-led initiative, launched at the UN Water Conference in New York in March 2023 by the governments of Colombia, DR Congo, Ecuador, Gabon, Mexico and Zambia. It aims to restore 300,000 km of degraded rivers and 350 million hectares of degraded wetlands by 2030 as well as conserve intact freshwater ecosystems.


The Global Commons Alliance’s Accountability Accelerator, the Climate Champions Team, and AccountAbility released “Climate and Nature, A Resource Navigator for Companies and Financial Institutions,” to enable companies to select and apply the tools most relevant to their business operations and stakeholders.

The COP28 Presidency, CBD COP15 Presidency, NDC Partnership, NBSAP Accelerator Partnership, UN Climate Change High-level Champions, and the UN CBD Action Agenda Champion organized a ministerial roundtable to discuss the importance, challenges, and opportunities in adopting a synergetic approach in the design and implementation of national climate and biodiversity plans and strategies.

ICLEI shared a biodiversity and nature financing toolkit for cities and regional governments to more easily access funds for NbS within their territories.

IETA released its Evolution of the Carbon Markets report, which looks at how compliance markets, project-based approaches, and the voluntary market have all changed and need to change to meet the challenge of a net-zero future.


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