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Agriculture plays a critical role in limiting the impact of climate change

As a major contributor to methane and nitrous oxide emissions, agriculture is key to fighting global warming. But policy makers are largely ignoring it.

When it comes to climate change, the next decade is critical. Yet many of the numbers used to assess the impact of climate change look over the next 100 years. This approach fails to consider the short-term impact of certain greenhouse gases, particularly methane (see sidebar, “A note on the research”). As emissions from agriculture are largely made up of methane, discussions often ignore the sheer size of agriculture and its critical role in limiting the impact of climate change.

Sidebar

In this infographic, we seek to tell a relatively simple story with far-reaching implications: agriculture accounts for a large, growing, and impactful share of global greenhouse gas emissions. Addressing these emissions is a massive challenge requiring the action of billions of people to change how we farm, what we eat, and how we manage our forests and natural carbon sinks.

Agriculture plays a critical role in limiting the impact of climate change
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