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Climate-Smart Land Use Insight Brief No. 1- Integrated Agriculture-Aquaculture (IAA) Systems for Climate Change Adaptation, Mitigation and Livelihoods

Integrated agriculture-aquaculture, a regionally historic system requiring limited resources, could provide a sustainable method for climate change adaptation, mitigation, and livelihoods.
Multiple Authors
Rice field, men farming the feild in the bottom half of photo

Introduction

As climate change is continuously presenting hazards across the globe, Southeast Asia (SEA) is especially burdened with sea-level riseresulting in saltwater intrusion, more variable precipitation, rising temperatures,andecosystem degradation. These hazards are jeopardizing food security and livelihoods in the region. Implementing alternative farming techniques to diversifyfood systems, reduce waste, increase productivity, and reduce dependency on chemical fertilisers and other agro-industrial products canbuild climate change resilience. Integrated agriculture-aquaculture (IAA) systems may offer the agriculture sector ofSEA sustainable adaptation andmitigation strategies.

IAA links aquaculture with plant crop or livestock farming systems in one of two ways: on-farm or direct integration, and indirect integration, using off-farm by-products as inputs into aquaculture systems.IAA is common in extensive and semi-intensive culture systems. IAA can be highly productive: a semi-intensive system can produce fish yields of up to 10tonnes per hectare. In extensive systems, inputs are primarily provided by natural foods such as plankton,molluscs, and insect adults, and larvae, while in semi-extensive systems, natural or supplementary feeds are used.

A key advantage of IAA is that it uses fewer pesticides and chemical fertilisers than conventional agriculture. The overall use of land and water can also be more efficient than separate systems would be, improving ecosystem health and reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

*Download the full publication from the right-hand column. A summary of the key findings is provided below. See the full report for more details.