The purpose of the project is to equip farm producers, advisors, and other agricultural stakeholders with tools to fight climate change both individually and collectively. To this end, a network of approximately 40 pilot farms was formed in fall 2021. These farms will help develop an analytical tool to be used in making decisions to fight climate change. Measures aimed at increasing farm resilience will also be tested and documented along with their economic impact.
In addition to awareness, training, and knowledge sharing activities, every region of Quebec will be given its own agricultural climate change adaptation plan. Regional working groups (active since 2017) will be used to develop and/or sustain collective efforts to fight climate change.
The analysis will include:
• The farm’s vulnerability to climate change
• GHG emissions
• Carbon sequestration
Since 2017, the aim of the project has been to understand the impacts of climate change on the various agricultural production types in all regions of the province. To this end, producers, advisors, and researchers have compiled their knowledge to determine the current and future impacts of climate change. During the numerous regional and local activities, they have also taken stock of the collective agricultural issues at play and proposed adaptation measures in response.
A total of 4,000 people attended Agriclimate activities between 2017 and 2020 (Phase 1), 50 percent of them farmers. A summary of the knowledge compiled for each region is available in the form of:
- Info sheets, organized by production type
- Agricultural climate change adaptation plans
While we understand the potential impacts of climate change better now than we did before, the question remains: how do we determine which specific threats exist and which measures should be implemented on farms in response? This is the objective of Phase 2 of Agriclimate, which runs from 2021 to 2024.
AGRICULTURAL CLIMATE CHANGE ADAPTATION PLANS
Adapting farming in a given region starts with an adaptation plan. The plan sets out the impacts of climate change on agriculture and proposes adaptation measures at the scale of individual farm businesses, of the region, and of the whole province. The adaptation plan comes before the action plan, which determines priorities, timelines, and leaders in conjunction with producers and stakeholders. The adaptation plan contains information that is useful for improving people’s understanding of the issues and implementing the selected actions.
What is an action plan for?
The objective of an action plan is threefold: to present and interpret the region’s climate scenarios, to identify threats to agriculture in the region, and to propose a wide range of adaptation measures at various levels.
How were the plans developed?
The agricultural climate change adaptation plans for the 10 participating regions came out of the different regional Agriclimate activities (2017–2020) and the invaluable collaboration between producers and stakeholders in Quebec’s farming community.
PHASE 2 (2021–2024)
Agriclimate is one of the 16 national projects selected from a call for proposals from the Ministère de l’Environnement et de la Lutte contre les changements climatiques (MELCC). We are proud to continue working with farmers in Phase 2 as part of the Ministère’s Action-Climat Québec plan in order to meet the sector’s needs and ensure sustained involvement from those working to achieve system-wide change.
By 2050, we can expect to see a major reform in the global food system. The planet is projected to have a population of 9 billion by that time, which calls for more food production. The predicted changes in climate around the world will affect agricultural productivity, for example through more severe pest infestations and adverse climate-related events such as droughts and flooding.
With this in mind, farmers and agricultural stakeholders took steps to help Quebec farms adapt so that food security, the financial health of farms, and the quality of the natural environment can continue.
WHY THIS PROJECT?
Changes in climate affect agriculture directly. The climate changes expected around the world will affect agricultural productivity everywhere, and Quebec is no exception. The future of Quebec farm businesses depends on the farming sector’s capacity to succeed and adapt to the realities of the new climate.
Agriculture also has an important role to play in fighting climate change. Farming emits greenhouse gases, but carbon can also be sequestered in the soil and in parts of farms dedicated to biodiversity.
These observations led producers and stakeholders to launch an adaptation project on Quebec farms, in order to fight climate change and increase the resilience of agroecosystems.
This project is intended to do the following:
- Raise awareness of climate-change-related issues among farmers and other stakeholders in the agricultural sector
- Give farmers and other stakeholders a chance to learn about the climate scenarios in their respective regions
- Develop regional portraits, identify issues, and prioritize adaptation measures
- Develop adaptation plans for participating regions
- Train professional facilitators who are active in the project
- Create a tool to analyze farms’ vulnerability to climate change
- Share the knowledge acquired in regional forums
To promote the resilience and competitiveness of Quebec farms by building their capacity to integrate climate change projections in major business decisions, thus improving agricultural sustainability.
FINANCIAL SUPPORT FOR THE PROJECT
The Agriclimate project is led by the Conseil pour le développement de l’agriculture du Québec (CDAQ) and is made possible thanks to financial support from the Quebec government, under its 2013–2020 Climate Change Action Plan. The CDAQ obtained two successive rounds of funding under the national component for a total of six and a half years, from April 2017 to November 2024.
Participation is a key element of the project; this allows farmers and other agricultural stakeholders to learn more about climate change, determine the impacts it will have for the different production types, and identify the adaptation measures best suited to the different regions.
The regions participating in this project account for most of the farmland in Quebec. Farmers in the regions participate in regional activities along with other stakeholders in the sector.