Dr. Masa Iwanaga, President of JIRCAS, opened the symposium by expressing his deep appreciation to all 218 participants, including guests from Asia, Africa, and other regions of the world, and describing the background and objectives of the symposium. Mr. Tomohiro Bessho, Director General of the Research Council’s Secretariat, the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF), Japan, then delivered a welcome address to all the participants and introduced recent contributions of MAFF to international research activities on agricultural greenhouse mitigation.
The first keynote speech, entitled “Climate Change and Agriculture: from Challenges to Solutions”(Abstract, Presentation) , was delivered by Dr. Jean-Francois Soussana, Vice-President of the French National Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA). The second keynote speech, entitled “More Food without Growing Greenhouse Gas Emissions”(Abstract, Presentation) was delivered by Dr. Kazuyuki Yagi, Research Manager for Climate Change of the National Institute for Agro-Environmental Sciences (NIAES), NARO, Japan, with the lecture showing a clear picture of GRA.
The keynote lectures were followed by thematic sessions. Speakers from Japan, Asia, and Latin America presented their research activities and achievements in mitigating greenhouse gas emissions, chiefly methane, from livestock and paddy rice fields. On cropland, studies on soil carbon sequestration as well as methane and nitrous oxide (N2O) gas emissions in Japan were shown, and a unique concept called ‘genetic mitigation’ of greenhouse gas emissions was presented. Then, valuable learning experiences from greenhouse gas inventory studies in Asia, and the integration and dissemination of mitigation technologies in Sub-Saharan Africa, were introduced.
The symposium was concluded by Dr. Akira Hasebe, Vice President of NARO, with words of appreciation to all speakers and chairs. He also emphasized the high importance of accelerating research on greenhouse gas mitigation from agriculture through the GRA Network and the initiative of Japan, which was officially designated as new Chair Country at the Council Meeting.