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Developing a Global Nitrous Oxide Reduction Policy for A Food-Secure Future

Multilateral approaches to nitrogen pollution are generating synergies between climate change and food security and presenting opportunities to reduce nitrous oxide (N2O) globally. N2O is the most abundant ozone-depleting substance not yet regulated by the Montreal Protocol and a powerful greenhouse gas. Failure to reduce emissions will delay ozone layer recovery and worsen the climate crisis. While cost-effective mitigation technologies to reduce N2O emissions are available, policies and incentives to encourage the uptake of such measures are lacking. The G20, whose membership includes the world’s largest food exporters and fertilizer consumers, is positioned to advance N2O mitigation by supporting coordinated multilateral action. G20 leadership on N2O can support food security by preventing drastic impacts of climate change on food production and safeguarding the ozone layer, which protects agriculture and biodiversity from harmful ultraviolet B radiation. It can also support the achievement of countries’ net-zero climate goals and nationally determined contributions.


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D. R. Kanter, R. V. Fajardo, V. Dhawan


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