Photo credit: Rural Poverty Portal
Sustainable Development Project for Agrarian Reform Settlements in the Semi-Arid North-East – November 2007 ©Ubirajara Machado/MDA/IFAD
Protecting the environment through sustainable production
The Sustainable Land Management in the Semi-Arid Sertão Project was designed as a complement to the IFAD-financed Dom Helder Câmara Project (DHCP), which ran from 1998 to 2007 in various areas of the semi-arid northeastern Brazil. The Sertão Project aimed to address pressing environmental and land degradation issues, and to build resilience to climate change. The project focused on the caatinga — a uniquely Brazilian scrub forest covering approximately 10 per cent of the total area of the country. The caatinga is one of Brazil’s most threatened natural landscapes.
In semi-arid northeastern Brazil, the main causes of land degradation are overgrazing and using of inappropriate agricultural practices such as burning. All that has led to the elevation of the water table and the salinization due to excessive irrigation, the salinization produced by irrigation and the deforestation for crops and livestock-raising. As a result, the caatinga biome’s rapid degradation prevented it from providing natural protection for its unique biodiversity.
The overall goal of the Sertão Project was therefore to minimize the causes and negative impacts of land degradation and to protect the integrity of the caatinga biome, through the implementation of sustainable land use systems.
Results and achievements
Read the full article: Rural Poverty Portal