BALI, Indonesia — At the G20 Meeting of Agricultural Chief Scientists this week, the U.S. Department of Agriculture underscored the importance of agricultural research and development in tackling the challenges of global food security and climate change and called on G20 members to support the Agriculture Innovation Mission for Climate. USDA’s Chief Scientist, Dr. Chavonda Jacobs-Young, led the U.S. delegation to the meeting, where agricultural science leaders from around the world convened to discuss global challenges facing agriculture and to align both national and global research and development priorities.
Meeting participants did not reach consensus on the communique due to the absence of language condemning Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
In explaining the U.S. position, Jacobs-Young, USDA’s Under Secretary for Research, Education, and Economics serving under the Biden-Harris Administration, condemned Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine as “an affront to the principles we seek to affirm and our efforts to advance international science, technology and innovation for development. In response to Putin’s aggression, the U.S. government has taken measures to limit bilateral science and technology research cooperation with the Russian government.”
Jacobs-Young also emphasized the significant role global leaders play in ensuring sufficient investment in agricultural research and innovation for climate change mitigation and adaptation.
“Ambitious investment in climate-smart agriculture and food systems innovation will help create a surge of solutions, enabling the world to meet nutritional needs, increase agricultural productivity, improve livelihoods, conserve nature and biodiversity, build resilience to climate change, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and sequester carbon. For this reason, the United States and the United Arab Emirates launched AIM for Climate at COP26. The initiative continues to grow rapidly, and we look forward to further advancing it at COP27 in Egypt later this year,” she said.
Jacobs-Young also highlighted the United States’ leadership role in the global Coalition for Sustainable Productivity Growth, as well as the United States’ continued focus on innovative technologies and approaches to reduce food loss and waste in the agricultural supply chain.
USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. In the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA is transforming America’s food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, fairer markets for all producers, ensuring access to safe, healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit www.usda.gov.