Water to combat rural poverty
Read at the Rural poverty portal
“Water is central to meeting all but foremost the first Millennium Development Goal (MDG) target of reducing by half the proportion of people living in extreme poverty and hunger by the year 2015. Global attention is mostly focused on the MDG regarding safe drinking water and sanitation. Given that approximately 70 per cent of the world’s mobilized water resources are used for agriculture, and that about half the world’s population will be suffering water scarcity by 2025, it is surprising that the international community has hitherto spent relatively little time or energy on these issues.
Attaining other MDGs improves the prospects of success in water. However, MDGs are a set of outcomes that do not represent all processes of development. There are, for example, no MDGs for peace and security, economic growth or governance. Yet these and other factors bear significantly upon prospects of success in water.
This complexity means that water is not always the main point of entry into development.
Poor rural people face an intricate web of deprivations. Improvements to lives and livelihoods will place water resources under increasing, and in some cases, unsustainable pressure. These twin challenges set the scene for the need to look at water in all of its contributions to development – in health, in food, in livelihoods, in energy and industry – through development that does not jeopardise the integrity of the environment, both in developing and developed countries.”
“The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), a specialized agency of the United Nations, was established as an international financial institution in 1977 as one of the major outcomes of the 1974 World Food Conference. The Conference was organized in response to the food crises of the early 1970s that primarily affected the Sahelian countries of Africa. The conference resolved that “an International Fund for Agricultural Development should be established immediately to finance agricultural development projects primarily for food production in the developing countries”. One of the most important insights emerging from the conference was that the causes of food insecurity and famine were not so much failures in food production, but structural problems relating to poverty and to the fact that the majority of the developing world’s poor populations were concentrated in rural areas.
IFAD’s mission is to enable the rural poor to overcome poverty.
IFAD is dedicated to eradicating rural poverty in developing countries. Seventy-five per cent of the world’s poorest people – 800 million women, children and men – live in rural areas and depend on agriculture and related activities for their livelihoods.
Working with rural poor people, governments, donors, non-governmental organizations and many other partners, IFAD focuses on country-specific solutions, which can involve increasing rural poor peoples’ access to financial services, markets, technology, land and other natural resources.”
If you want to know more about IFAD, please go to
You can also click at the link you find under BLOGROLL (right column of my blog)
rural poverty portal
Are you looking for information on desertification and related topics ? Have a look at :
External links and references
- Desertification Blog – Active blog authored by Prof. Dr. Willem Van Cotthem about desertification and techniques to combat it.
- Oasis – A global agricultural research-for-development partnership against desertification
- Walker, A. S. (10/29/1997). Desertification. United States Geological Survey. Retrieved on 2006–06-10. – public domain source for portions of this article.
- Batterbury, S.P.J. & A.Warren. 2001. Desertification. in N. Smelser & P. Baltes (eds.) International Encyclopædia of the Social and Behavioral Sciences. Elsevier Press. Pp. 3526-3529
- Bell, Trudy; Phillips, Tony, Dr. (December 6, 2002). City-swallowing Sand Dunes. NASA. Retrieved on 2006–04-28.
- Benjaminsen, Tor A., and Gunvor Berge (2000). Timbuktu: myter, menneske, miljø. Oslo: Spartakus forlag.
- Desert Research Institute, Nevada
- Educational Quiz on the UN Year to Combat Desertification
- Eden Foundation article on desertification
- FAO Information Portal – Properties and Management of Drylands
- Geist, Helmut (2005): The Causes and Progression of Desertification, Abingdon: Ashgate
- GTZ CCD Project – A key player in combating desertification and drought effects
- Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (2005): Desertification Synthesis Report – Summary by GreenFacts
- Reynolds, James F., and D. Mark Stafford Smith (ed.) (2002): Global Desertification – Do Humans Cause Deserts? Dahlem Workshop Report 88, Berlin: Dahlem University Press.
- Stock, Robert (1995). Africa South of the Sahara. New York: The Guilford Press.
- UNEP (2006): Global Deserts Outlook
- UNEP Programme on Success Stories in Land Degradation/ Desertification Control
- United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification – Secretariat
- Rural poverty and desertification on the Rural Poverty Portal
- A guide for desert and dryland restoration By David A. Bainbridge
- Fighting Desertification Through Conservation Report on a project to stop the advance of the Sahara in Algeria – IPS, 27 February 2007
- Soil-Net.com A free schools-age educational site, featuring much on desertification, teaching about soil and its importance.
This article incorporates text from http://pubs.usgs.gov/gip/deserts/desertification/, a public domain work of the United States Government.
on “African Agriculture” website
“An impressive crop of sweet potatoes, yams, cabbages, cucumbers, carrots and tomatoes has spelt a good season for Burkinabé farmer Amadou Diallo, who attributes his success to a nearby water storage tank.
“Thanks to the proximity of this water point, we have a turnover of five to six million CFA francs per year (10,000 to 12,000 dollars),” says Diallo, who farms a six hectare plot in Dori, in the north of the country, together with other producers. “But we could have produced much more if we had several water tanks, since we have land available.”
Over recent years, setting up irrigation systems at village level has been policy in Burkina Faso, thanks to the 1998 creation of a directorate in the agriculture ministry tasked with small-scale irrigation. The directorate provides small farmers with subsidised supplies and helps them set up water storage tanks, enabling many to have two harvests annually, even though Burkina Faso only has one rainy season.
Continue reading Irrigation – Agriculture – Burkina Faso
Found at the website of “African Agriculture”
Mary, Florence and other farmers in Maili Saba and Kibera use untreated sewage water to irrigate their vegetable crops, a practice they continue without the use of protective clothing. In this way they are able to maintain production throughout the year, except when there is a shortage of water in Nairobi and the middle income households do not flush their toilets or throw away waste water.
Continue reading Wastewater irrigation empowers Kenya’s urban farmers
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Senegal : forest fires reduce soil fertility in an already dry land
“It is the season for bush fires in Senegal, and there are once again concerns that vast tracts of fertile land could be set alight, and ravaged. The season extends from October to May, with most of the fires occurring in the south and south-east of the country. Over 2005 and 2006, more than 400,000 hectares were affected in the course of an unusually severe series of fires. People often start fires in an effort to clear land of bush for farming, enabling them to avoid the laborious task of clearing manually.
Continue reading Soil fertility and forest fires in Senegal (African Agriculture)
Excellent FAO-initiative described at the African Agriculture” website
“A new FAO project seeks to boost agricultural production in Kenya and Tanzania by encouraging a shift to conservation agriculture (CA) techniques, which optimizes the use of farm labour and could also help reduce widespread land degradation. CA techniques include reduced or no-tillage (NT) of the soil, and the use of permanent soil cover.
Continue reading African Agriculture: low-tillage and soil cover (FAO)