However, the vast environmental pressures from agriculture have become a serious challenge. Thus, reducing the environmental impacts from food production meanwhile increasing agricultural productivity is actually one of the most daunting tasks to enhance food security and sustainable development in China. Key issues are the soil and nutrient management and the pesticide application, and their subsequent impacts on land and water quality and food safety. Climate changes pose additional challenges that agriculture must adapt to, but also mitigate, by contributing a reduction in the release of green-house gas (GHG). A wide range of technologies, scientifically sound systems and tools, enabling policy frameworks will be necessary to address these challenges and new technologies and approaches that can increase the use efficiency of chemical inputs, water and plant breeding material, that can help in are the obtaining sustainable food security. Norway and the Norwegian Institute of Bioeconomy Research (NIBIO) have substantial experience in developing advanced technologies and practical management tools at farm level. By joining forces with leading Chinese scientists and institutions there are great potentials in cooperation for development and exchange of innovative technologies that are applicable to the Chinese challenges and beyond, for integrating environmental protection, adaptation and mitigation to climate change, food security and safety. The world population is expected to reach an estimated 9.2 billion by 2050. Therefore, food production globally has to increase by 70% in order to feed the world, while total arable land, which has reached its maximal utilization in some regions, may even decrease. To produce enough food to feed the world and at the same time to protect the environment, optimized nutrient management (ONM) and integrated pest and disease management (IPM) is of importance for sustainable food production in the future. Agriculture R & T development has been given top priority in China at both national and provincial levels. NIBIO has a high level of competence on utilizing advanced technologies for both ONM and IPM. It is of great value that NIBIO and Norway are now able to establish good contacts within the Chinese agricultural research community. With joint efforts of Norway and China, the SINOGRAIN project aims:
- to assure sustainable and high-yielding grain production in China with reduced environmental footprint by means of innovative technologies
- to develop and adapt technologies and tools that are applicable at a farm level
- to reduce losses of plant nutrients into the environment and to improve land productivity
- to reduce environmental and food safety risks linked to pesticide use in agriculture and to increase crop productivity; and to strengthen bilateral relations in issues linked to “grand global challenges”, i.e. food security and climate change.