World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Landscapes approach to restoration in Rwanda reaps benefits

‘Landscapes approach’ to restoration in Rwanda reaps benefits; next step requires foreign investment, Agriculture Minister says

Kalibata details country’s hard road to fixing farms, forests and boosting livelihoods

Warsaw, 21 November 2013 — Rwanda has made major strides in repairing degraded lands and restoring agricultural productivity, correcting “huge mistakes” in land management that were made in the past, the country’s top agricultural official said.

Africa’s most densely populated country is highly dependent on agriculture — 80 percent of the population relies on farming for its livelihood, said Agnes Kalibata, Rwanda’s Minister of Agriculture. Speaking recently to an audience of 1,200 at the Global Landscapes Forum, a 2-day side event to the UN climate change negotiations in Warsaw, Kalibata said her country has made hard-fought changes to the way it manages its land. “We use the environment the way we’ve always used it,” she said. “And we’ve made huge mistakes.”

Among those mistakes was the widespread clearing of Rwanda’s forested areas, which led to widespread erosion and soil degradation. In order to restore the land, Kalibata said, the national government had to temporarily move 9,000 families off the land. This top-down approach extended further: Now, by law, only certain types of farming are permitted in these areas. Yet it has yielded benefits: Programs to increase productivity, soil fertility and terrace management have helped pull 1 million Rwandans out of poverty in five years, Kalibata said, adding that productivity has increased six-fold during this period.

But top-down alone won’t achieve the country’s development goals — and now the government is looking at the wider landscape toward a more inclusive paradigm. In shifting to a “landscapes approach” to development — one that is inclusive of more stakeholders and addresses all land uses and land-use dynamics in a holistic view — Rwanda has moved rapidly.

The government has worked to build partnerships with donor and development agencies, seeking to boost agricultural and climate resilience and capacity among farmers, particularly smallholders and women. “Supporting women and empowering women farmers to be part of production systems, especially in fragile environments like ours, is extremely important,” Kalibata said.

Lamenting the lack of private investment in the country, Kalibata was optimistic that the country’s public-sector commitment to improving its infrastructure and its landscapes will reap benefits. “If we do this, then we can engage the private sector as well,” she said.

Watch Kalibata’s speech

The Global Landscapes Forum was co-convened by the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) on behalf of the 14 organizations of the Collaborative Partnership on Forests, and by the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS), on behalf of an international consortium of 12 leading Agriculture and Rural Development organizations in collaboration with the host country partners: Poland’s Ministry of Environment, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, and the University of Warsaw.

For more information, visit www.landscapes.org.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Whaling: Japan’s Institute for Cetacean Research In Defiance Of World Court Ruling

The ICR Today Filed Court Briefs Stating They Intend to Return to Antarctica to Hunt Whales in 2015-2016; Will Seek to Enjoin Other Sea Shepherd Entities from Obstructing Their Operations More>>

Ukraine: UN Urges 'Maximum Restraint' Amid Situation In East Ukraine

Deeply concerned by the deteriorating situation in eastern Ukraine, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has called for maximum restraint and appealed to all sides to work towards calming the situation, which has the 'growing potential' to ... More>>

United Nations: Children Can Now Lodge Complaints With The UN

GENEVA (14 April 2014) – United Nations child rights experts have hailed a new treaty that allows children to complain directly to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child about alleged violations of their rights. More>>

India: Election But A Ritual In Nation Lacking Rule Of Law

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) congratulates the people of India for their participation to elect the 16th Lok Sabha. The process has attracted, as usual, considerable media attention across the world. Media claims the process to be 'the largest democratic ... More>>

Solomon Islands: Thousands Remain Affected After Flash Floods

An estimated 52,000 people remain affected in the worst-hit areas of Honiara and greater Guadalcanal following last week’s devastating floods which killed at least 23 people. More>>

ALSO:

World: Some 437,000 People Murdered Worldwide In 2012 - UN

Almost half a million people across the world lost their lives in 2012 as a result of intentional homicide, with the highest murder rates logged in the Americas and Africa, and the lowest in Europe, Asia and Oceania, the United Nations Office on ... More>>

Central African Republic:: Security Council Establishes UN Peacekeeping Mission

Deeply concerned about the deteriorating security situation and ongoing human rights abuses in the Central African Republic (CAR), the Security Council today approved the establishment of a nearly 12,000-strong United Nations peacekeeping operation ... More>>

ALSO:

Parliament: NZ Sending Aid Flight To Solomons

Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully has announced further support for the response to severe flooding in Solomon Islands. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news