Climate change is a global phenomenon with apparent evidence in the increasing number of extreme weather events, such as floods, typhoons, storms, and droughts. While the agriculture sector remain the sole contributor in food production, agriculture, forestry, and land use is the second biggest contributor of greenhouse gasses (GHG) emissions. According to the World Research Institute (2020), agriculture emits 18.4% of total GHG emissions. The latest IPCC Press Release on the 28th of February 2022 in relation to the “Climate Change 2022: Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability, contribution of Working Group II to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change” presented a grim view. Nevertheless, the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow in November 2021 offered a very limited action.
With regard to these issues, there are traditional knowledge and modern, scientific technology that potentially become strategies in mitigating and adapting to climate change. Some examples of traditional knowledge include agroforestry, terracing, crop rotation, and integrated farming that have been commonly practiced by farmers in many parts of the world, including in Indonesia. Besides providing crop and income diversification as a portfolio for the farms to face uncertainties in weather, the practices are also important for land and soil conservation. Some of this knowledge supplement the modern agricultural practices to form the concept of climate-smart agriculture, among others. Meanwhile, there are precision agriculture as modern, scientific technology along with the advancement in the communication and information technology. The use of sensors, IoT, robot, GPS, and mobile devices for climate, crop, and cattle monitoring, or greenhouse and irrigation automation can conserve soil and water as well as increase productivity in the changing climate and environment.
Summer course on Smart-Eco Bioproduction Agriculture (SC-SOBA) with the topic of “Climate-Smart Agriculture” is the continuation of the first SC-SOBA in 2021 that take the topic of “The Nexus between Traditional Ecological Knowledge and Modern Agricultural Practices” held by the Faculty of Agriculture UGM. Despite the urgent issues of climate change, due to Indonesia being considered a highly vulnerable country to climate change, there has been no apparent awareness and fast-paced or wide-spread action from the academic, the government, and the society at large to overcome it. Since the last decades, actions related to climate change have been small in scale and patchy. Studies show that while the Indonesian farmers are aware of the climatic and environmental changes, such as increasing daily temperature, unpredictable seasonal changes, longer dry periods, many are not familiar with the term and the broader impact of climate change.
Therefore, the 2nd SC-SOBA is expectedly to gather lecturers, professors, researchers and students from various fields in agriculture to discuss the climate change issue in the agriculture sector. This includes the impact of climate change from the perspective of agronomy, soil/water science, microbiology, plant protection, and socio-economy, as well as best practices and potential mitigation and adaptation strategies.
This is a 3-credit course, which will combine: a) instruction and discussion (2 credits); b) video presentation as final project (1 credits).