Reducing the Need to Burn: How Applying Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization in Cambodia can Improve Air Quality


This brief highlights the results and recommendations from a pilot on agricultural machinery-based solutions to address burning of straw residue in Cambodia which leads to air pollution and other adverse consequences. The pilot was part of a project jointly implemented during 2021-2023 by ESCAP’s Centre for Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization (CSAM) and Environment and Development Division (EDD) in three countries in South and Southeast Asia with financial support from the China-ESCAP Cooperation Programme. The brief is part of a series of four briefs.

Acknowledgements: This brief was developed by Ms. Abigail Smith as part of work commissioned by ESCAP’s Sustainable Urban Development Section of the Environment and Development Division and the Centre for Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization. Reviews and comments provided by Dr. Carly Reddington, Associate Professor, University of Leeds (U.K.), are gratefully acknowledged.

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