Following a grant awarded by Climate, Food and Farming Network (CLIFF) 2017, we, Joseph Macharia and Jane Gitonga got an opportunity to attend the CLIFF workshop held in Cologne, Germany between 7th November and 11th November 2017. The CLIFF Research Network: a capacity-building program for PhD/Masters students from developing countries under the umbrella of Climate Change Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) aims at providing opportunities for students to learn how to evaluate agricultural related options for reducing GHG emissions from farming systems by expanding their knowledge as well as developing skills in GHG quantification.
The 2017 CLIFF workshop was held at in Cologne, Germany in line with UNFCCC COP23. Eleven grant recipients from different countries around the world; Nepal, Vietnam, India, Colombia and Kenya, were part of the workshop. In addition, students had the opportunity to attend side events held in Bonn, Germany.
Several key note speakers were also in attendance to share their knowledge. Meryl Richards gave an overview of CCAFS and CLIFF network. Anette Friis presented on COP23 and UNFCCC processes giving a brief history of COP and a number of reasons why it mattered. Tek Sapkota virtually presented on the use of empirical tools and calculators used to quantify GHG emissions from agriculture. The discussion mainly focused on Mitigation Options Tool (MOT) & Cool Farm Tool (CFT) which are farmer focused, excel based, free and open source. Rosa Roman Cuesta, presented on global hotspots of agricultural GHG emissions. Her session was interactive allowing each student in small groups to contribute by identifying two countries in each continent and their agriculture GHG emission sources and mitigation goals considering aspects such as supply and demand. Todd Rosenstock gave a very informative and well needed presentation on how to write and publish a fantastic research paper. Ciniro Costa Jr. presented on the various ways of measuring changes in soil carbon stock. Chirinda Ngonidzashe through virtual presentation shared on climate smart agriculture. Finally, Jacobo Arango gave a presentation on quantifying mitigation potential in livestock systems.
Ultimately, the experience we received from the workshop was very relevant in our scientific career growth. We were able to share our progress as well as receive inputs from fellow grantees and experts in the relevant fields. Through this interaction, we are able to identify various avenues of collaborative research related to climate change; now and into the future.
We are thus thankful to CGIAR-CCAFS, CLIFF, Mazingira Centre and ILRI-Nairobi for this precious opportunity.