Carbon farming in Africa: opportunities and challenges for engaging smallholder farmers

In the debate on climate change and the potential of carbon farming, two aspects are stressed. First, the importance of reaching netā€zero CO2 emissions globally by 2050. Second, the need to transform food systems to address persistently high levels of food insecurity in some global regions, including Africa. Carbon farming has the potential to contribute to both objectives by promoting agricultural practices that increase carbon sequestration in soils and plants and contribute to the reduction or avoidance of GHG emissions while also increasing the productivity and long-term sustainability of agricultural production. However, smallholder farmers lack the financial means to invest in carbon farming practices and thereby capitalize on related opportunities. One solution to bridge this gap are payments linked to the implementation of carbon farming practices, thereby compensating farmers for the societal benefits that they generate. Based on a literature review, assessed the opportunities and challenges for involving smallholder farmers in emerging agricultural carbon markets.