Economics professor with the New York University, Professor Yaw Nyarko, has called on government to adopt technology to address the devastating effect of climate change on farmlands.
He is warning Millions of livelihoods across Africa are at stake if urgent steps are not adopted to address it. Government at this year’s national farmers day celebration identified climate change as the biggest threat to farming.
Prof. Nyarko who is behind the Centre for Technology and Economic Development at the University of Ghana is currently using mapping, drone image and artificial intelligence to examine how technology impacts on lands rights for agricultural purposes.
He says the threat is real and must be tackled.
“One of the first things we need to do is to measure the impact of climate change, what crop land is disappearing, why are we losing our forest cover and do we have legislation to address it, these are the questions and we can use technology to address some of them because climate change is extremely important,” he indicated.
Professor Nyarko current research focuses on technology and economic development, commodity exchange and markets in Africa.
As a former consultant to the African development bank, the world bank and the United Nations, he is convinced technology has come to stay and farmers must take advantage and apply it.
The Center is currently working with 300 smallholder farms nationwide from the New York University Research Center at Kumawu in the Ashanti region.
The main objective of the Center according to professor Nyarko is to make farmers rich through the use of technology to market their products using the commodities exchange commission.
Currently, maize is being traded through the exchange but professor Nyarko says locally produced rice will be added next year to address the glut currently experiencing in the country.”
“It’s a simple app and once the farmer has it on his or her mobile phone trading can take place. This, in essence, addresses post-harvest lost and will encourage interest in farming especially for the youth,” he said.
President Akufo-Addo as part of his tour of the Ashanti region this year visited the Kumawu Research Centre and indicated the Centre forms part of some of the highly innovative projects government was exploring to promote and sustain food production and security.