National Mission For Sustainable Agriculture Explained

May 11, 2021
National Mission For Sustainable Agriculture

The National Mission for Sustainable Agriculture (NMSA) is one of the eight Missions under the National Action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC). It seeks to address issues regarding ‘Sustainable Agriculture’ in the context of risks associated with climate change by devising appropriate adaptation and mitigation strategies for ensuring food security, equitable access to food resources, enhancing livelihood opportunities and contributing to economic stability at the national level.

Agriculture plays a crucial role in ensuring food security while also accounting for a significant share of India‟s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). It engages almost two-thirds of the workforce in gainful employment. Presently, the threat of climate change poses a challenge for sustainable agricultural growth.

Vision of National Mission for Sustainable Agriculture

  • Transform Agriculture into Climate Resilient Production system
  • Grow and Ecologically Sustain agricultural production to its Fullest Potential
  • Ensure Food Security and Equitable Access to Food Resources
  • Enhance Livelihood Opportunities
  • Contribute to Economic Stability at the National Level

Key Focus Areas

  • Strategic Planning at Agro Climatic Zone Level
  • Customized interventions to enhance productivity
  • Easy access to Information and Institutional Support
  • Linking Laboratory to Land
  • Dry land Farming

Functional areas under NMSA

The four functional areas are:

  1. Research and Development
  2. Technology, Products and Practices
  3. Infrastructure
  4. Capacity Building

Integration with other National Missions

The Mission would seek convergence and coordination among the key ministries and departments at all levels of governance

  • National Mission on Water: Water Conservation and Management
  • National Mission for a Green India: Soil and Water Conservation, Agro-forestry
  • National Mission for Enhanced Energy Efficiency: Energy Pricing, Water Pump Efficiency
  • National Solar Mission: Utilizing Solar and Wind Power for agriculture
  • National Mission on Strategic Knowledge on Climate Change: R&D and Knowledge Management

Impact of adverse climate on crops

  • Productivity: 15-17 % decrease in yields of wheat and rice for a 2°C rise in temperature. However, the losses would be partially offset by an increase in the levels of CO2. Wheat, which is generally grown in the winter, is predicted to be affected more than rice.
  • Quality of Produce: High night time temperature increases respiration rate, decreases membrane thermal stability and negatively affects the yield in rice. In wheat, grain number and weight is reduced due to prolonged high temperatures and drought conditions
  • Drought decreases plant defense mechanism and creates more favourable environment for pests and insects
  • Reduction in ground water recharge will affect irrigation potentials. Soil quality and moisture content will be degraded Possibilities of salination of land due to sea water ingress and salt accumulation

Interventions through National Mission for Sustainable Agriculture

  1. Improved Crop Seeds, Livestock and Fish Culture
    • Promoting Use of Biotechnology
    • Research and Promotion of C4 pathways in C3 plants
    • Conserving Indigenous Genetic resources
    • PPP in R&D, Management and Dissemination of Improved varieties
    • Conserving ‘Agricultural Heritage”
  2. Water Efficiency
    • Promoting Water Use Efficiency in Irrigation
    • Research and Development in the areas of energy efficient water systems
    • Developing mechanisms for integrated management of rainwater, surface and ground water
    • Policy Instruments for PPP
    • Strengthen local institutions in managing water allocation and utilization
  3. Pest Management
    • Efficient, safe and environmentally sound methods of pest management.
    • Incentivizing Research, Commercial Production and Marketing of biopesticides
    • Developing insect forecasting models
    • Decision and Information Support Systems for Pest & Disease Surveillance
    • Institutional Mechanism for Quick Response in case of disaster
  4. Improved Farm Practices
    • Improved agronomic practices to reduce farm losses
    • Conservation and Precision Farming
    • Knowledge Management
    • Soil Conservation, Bio-Fertilizer
    • Policy Instruments for optimum Land Use
  5. Nutrient Management
    • Strengthening services for promoting production and use of bio-fertilizers
    • Developing nutritional strategies for managing heat stress in dairy animals
    • Strengthening capacity of existing soil testing labs
    • Quality standards and quality control system for raising confidence among users
  6. Agricultural Insurance
    • Developing various models for risk assessment
    • Designing user-friendly decision support systems to help assess risks and develop region specific contingency plans
    • Strengthening existing risk cover mechanism under NAIS and Weather Based Crop Insurance Scheme
    • Implementing region-specific contingency plans based on vulnerability and risk scenarios
  7. Credit Support
    • Developing new forms of credit assessment and risk management systems
    • Promoting micro finance
    • Developing mechanisms to enhance the flow of credit to critical infrastructure
    • Up-scaling the Kisan Credit Card Scheme (KCCS)
    • Designing customised credit policies and programmes to mitigate risks
  8. Markets
    • To formulate market-aligned Research and Development programmes
    • Improving Supply Chain Efficiency
    • Creation of new market infrastructure
    • Supporting community partnerships in developing food and forage banks
    • Strengthening access to quality and timely inputs by farmers for mitigating risks
  9. Access to Information
    • Minimizing Information Asymmetry through ICT-based systems
    • Public Private Partnership to develop technology based solution for providing farmers with information on price discovery, commodity arrivals, mandi prices etc.
    • Building an ICT enabled Knowledge Management network
    • To Create, Manage and Develop National Resource Portal
  10. Livelihood Diversification
    • Mitigating risks by supplementing income from Off-Farm activities
    • Crop Diversification
    • Crop-Livestock-Fisheries Farming System

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