Agricultural activities in the developing world directly contribute about 4.23 GtCO2eq/y to the current anthropogenic forcing of the global climate, and indirectly a further approximately 3.93GtCO2eq/y through forest clearing and degradation. Together they constitute a quarter of the total global climate forcing from all sources.

About half of the global gas and particle emissions to the atmosphere resulting from the burning of biomass originate from sub-Saharan Africa. There are four principal pathways: wildfires, the use of biomass fuels for energy, burning associated with deforestation and the burning of agricultural residues.