The Agro + Eficiente projects, whose main objective is to find strategies to adapt the agriculture that is carried out in the Algarve to climate change, were presented this Wednesday, November 30th, in a session that took place at the headquarters of the Regional Directorate of Agriculture and Fisheries do Algarve (DRAPAlg), which promotes them.
«In a scenario where climate change is becoming increasingly evident (namely in the Algarve) and it is necessary to take measures to adapt to its effects, the rational use of water in crops, namely through the study of cultural practices aimed at maximizing the productive capacity with a decrease in irrigation allocations, together with the use of genetic resources from traditional varieties (mainly fruit trees), which are not demanding in terms of irrigation, gain renewed interest and centrality», frames DRAPAlg.
To try to find answers to these challenges, this entity submitted an application «which involves several other public and private entities, framed in the theme of valuing traditional genetic resources, new cultures and management of irrigation water in the context of climate change, to the PRR/ Research and Innovation Agenda for the Sustainability of Agriculture, Food and Agro – industry, which was approved.
«The Agro + Eficiente projects are reference studies for the Algarve, which include the main species and methods of agricultural production in the region, in an integrated perspective of rationalizing water consumption, preserving ecosystems, increasing soil fertility and using resources endogenous genetic resources», frames the regional direction.
The essays «include emblematic crops of the Algarve, such as citrus fruits, new crops, such as avocado trees and dragon fruit and traditional fruit trees (carob trees, almond trees, fig trees and olive trees), associated with the ancestral cultivation system of the region, the traditional orchard».
These works will take into account several factors, such as water management in the context of climate change, the study and enhancement of traditional fruit growing systems, the enhancement of plant genetic resources and the study of species adapted to climate change, also involving « actions for the promotion and dissemination of good agricultural practices that could contribute to laying the foundations for the renewal of Algarve agriculture, in the new paradigm resulting from climate change».
In addition to Pedro Valadas Monteiro, Regional Director of Agriculture and Fisheries of the Algarve, Pedro Correia, Alcinda Neves and Amílcar Duarte, from the University of Algarve, and António Marreiros and Luís Cabrita, from DRAPAlg, also participated in this session.
The guest speaker was researcher Luís Dias, from the Faculty of Sciences of the University of Lisbon, leader of the consortium responsible for drawing up the Intermunicipal Plan for Adaptation to Climate Change in the Algarve (PIAAC – AMAL), which presented «conventional measures and solutions based on nature to adapt the region to the challenges of climate change”.