Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Bekir Pakdemirli, who participated in the Climate Change and Agriculture Workshop held at the International Agricultural Research and Training Center (UTAEM) in Menemen, stated that climate change is one of the most important issues on the world agenda, and that they organized this workshop with the awareness of this process.
Explaining that natural disasters such as floods, storms and droughts have increased 5 times in the last 50 years, and the annual damage of global disasters has reached 170 billion dollars in the last 10 years, Pakdemirli said that if measures are not taken, approximately 20 percent of the world’s population faces the risk of flooding in 2050 with climate change. He noted that it is predicted that half of the population will be at risk of dehydration.
“We were exposed to 16 major forest spreads in 17 days”
Minister Pakdemirli emphasized that a decrease of 10 to 25 percent is expected in agricultural production until 2050 due to the impact of climate change, and said:
“In addition, due to climate change and the destruction of habitat, approximately 1 million species are at risk of extinction in the world today. Climate change affects nature and all sectors negatively every day, but we have to change faster than the climate. When we look at the picture in our country, climate change has some In our regions, excessive precipitation and flooding, drought in some regions and large forest fires in some regions.
The month of July went down in history as the hottest July in the world in the last 142 years. When we look at the previous two years, the average temperature in July in the Aegean and Mediterranean regions was 27 degrees, the humidity was above 50 percent, the wind speed was around 30 kilometers per hour, while this year the temperature rose to 42 degrees, the wind speed increased to 70 kilometers per hour, and the humidity increased to 10 percent. fell below.
As a result, while there have been 5 major forest fires in the last 2 years in our country, we have been exposed to 16 major forest fires in a total of 17 days between 28 July and 13 August. Climate change also negatively affects the water cycle. While the average annual precipitation in our provinces of Bartın, Kastamonu and Sinop, where we have experienced floods recently, was between 500 and 800 kilograms per square meter, these provinces received 40 to 70 percent of the annual precipitation in the 4 days between 10 and 13 August.”
“21 percent decrease in precipitation compared to the agricultural season”
Minister Pakdemirli stated that Turkey’s meteorological and agricultural drought risk is also increasing, and said, “The average temperature in Turkey in the 8 months of 2021 was 15.7 degrees. This value is 1.7 degrees above the long-term average. Our precipitation amount is 8 percent this year. There was a decrease of 6 percent compared to the average of many years and a decrease of 21 percent compared to the agricultural production season in the month of May. Droughts that were experienced every 10 years before, will be seen every 5-6 years from now on. We see similar scenes in the world too. Fires, floods Events such as heat waves and heat waves are the leading effects of climate change. We will be exposed to these disasters more frequently and more in the coming period.” he said.
Underlining that taking measures to reduce the effects of climate change in agriculture, forestry and water, switching to production methods that will reduce global warming, and using natural resources efficiently, it has become a necessity, not a choice anymore, Pakdemirli said, “Turkey is not a country that will remain a spectator to climate change. We will be ready for the new climate by empowering our customers and ensuring the efficient use of water.” used his statements.
Describing their work on climate change, Pakdemirli emphasized that they successfully implemented the “Agricultural Drought Fighting Strategy Action Plan”, which they prepared for 81 provinces in order to minimize the effects of drought.
“Thanks to TARSİM, the farmer looks to the future with confidence”
Pakdemirli said that 42 drought-tolerant wheat and 19 barley varieties were developed and registered, and that efforts to support farmers who produce using seeds of drought-resistant varieties are continuing.
Pakdemirli stated that they will pay support between 30 and 100 liras per decare to the producers producing cereals and pulses in dry conditions due to the drought disaster in some regions this year, and continued as follows:
“This year, we paid 800 million liras of a total damage compensation of 1.6 billion liras within the scope of TARSİM. After the end of the harvest determinations, the remaining compensation will be paid to our producers. Among the damage compensations, we paid a total of 214 million liras to 14 thousand 213 producers in 43 provinces damaged by drought. I invite you to register with TARSİM.”
“Turkey has set an example to the world”
Pakdemirli stated that Turkey has set an example to the whole world as a country that protects and increases greenery with its forestry works in the last 19 years, adding that 5.5 billion saplings were brought together with the soil in this period, and the forest area was increased by 2 million hectares to 22.9 million hectares.
Pakdemirli stated that Turkey, which was in the 46th rank in 2015 in the world forest wealth ranking, rose to the 27th rank in 2020, “We are continuing our efforts to reforest the burned areas and expand our existing forests. From October-November, with the first rains, until the end of the year. “With the Breath for the Future Campaign, we will bring together 252 million saplings, three of which will be planted for each of our citizens. Hopefully, we will heal the wounds and we will make the burned areas a part of the green homeland by reforesting.” he said.