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Strengthening Capacity for Climate Adaptation in Lesotho - GCP/LES/049/LDF









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    Booklet
    Climate-Smart Agriculture in Guinea-Bissau 2019
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    The climate smart agriculture (CSA) concept reflects an ambition to improve the integration of agriculture development and climate responsiveness. It aims to achieve food security and broader development goals under a changing climate and increasing food demand. CSA initiatives sustainably increase productivity, enhance resilience, and reduce/remove greenhouse gases (GHGs), and require planning to address trade-offs and synergies between three pillars: productivity, adaptation and mitigation. The priorities of different countries and stakeholders are reflected to achieve more efficient, effective, and equitable food systems that address challenges in environment, social, and economic dimensions across productive landscapes. The country profile provides a snapshot of a developing baseline created to initiate discussion, both within countries and globally, about entry points for investing in CSA at scale. The agricultural sector is the main stay of the economy of Guinea-Bissau. In the absence of other resources, the sector despite being underdeveloped plays a leading role in supporting food security and job creation. Presently it contributes about 46% of national gross domestic product (GDP) with 84% of the population actively employed in primary production agriculture largely dominated by women. The majority of these farmer are small scale farmers farming on less than two hectare (2 ha). More than half (58%) of the total land in Guinea-Bissau is used for agriculture with area under forest heavily degraded by rapid exploitation. However, there are huge potentials for agricultural and forestry land including arable land estimated at about 1.5 million hectares. Farmers engage in the production of diverse crops and livestock such as cashew, rice (country’s staple food), sorghum, maize, etc largely cultivated by subsistence farmers. Women usually take up horticulture in the urban areas. Livestock production concentrated mainly in the north and east of the country is one of the main economic activities supporting food security and thousands of livelihoods. The country is divided into three agroecological zones based on ecological, climatic and demographic characteristics. Agriculture is mainly rainfed with very limited irrigated farming practised. About 82% of water withdrawn is used for agricultural purposes impelling a necessity for huge investments in irrigation to support agriculture production. The projected population growth and food demand is expected to have serious implications on food security with a potential to affect the agricultural sector. Despite the agro-forestry-pastoral potential and fisheries resources of Guinea-Bissau, many studies have shown that, the current food situation in the country is very precarious with poverty identified as the underlining cause. Greenhouse gas (GHG) emission from the agricultural sector has been identified as very high with the country indicating reforestation as the major action for mitigating GHG emissions in its nationally determined contribution (NDC). Some challenges for the agricultural sector identified include (i) growth in population and food demand, (ii) land use change and natural resource depletion, (iii) limited marketing opportunities of agricultural commodities, and (iv) climate change and variability. Guinea-Bissau has a typical hot, humid monsoon-like tropical climate with two well-defined seasons. Agriculture is exposed to the effects of climate change with the country vulnerable to droughts, floods and sea level rise. The projected changes in temperature and rainfall are expected to have substantial impact on water resources which are already limited in their capacity to provide sufficient water for the agriculture sector. CSA technologies and practises present opportunities for addressing climate change challenges as well as for economic growth and development of the agriculture sector. Identified CSA practises in use in the country include (i) use of organic manure, (ii) use of weather information, (iii) water supply through drip irrigation, (iv) anti-erosion arrangement, (v) forage/fodder production, (vi) crop rotation, and (vii) rainwater harvesting through the Zai technique. There are a number of institutions and policies aimed at supporting and increasing agriculture productivity and advancing CSA practises in Guinea-Bissau. These include government, private sector, the national institute for agrarian research and general directorate of rural engineering with each most of the institutions profiles having CSA-related activities that deliver on all three pillars of CSA. The Ministry of environment which serves as the country’s UNFCCC focal point and Nationally Designated Authority to the Green Climate Fund (GCF), Adaptation fund, Climate Investment Fund and Global Environment Facility is responsible for the country’s climate change plans and policies. The food and agriculture organisation of the United Nations, the United Nations development programme and the international union for conservation of nature play instrumental roles in the promotion of sustainable agriculture and environmental sustainability. Most of the climate change and CSA-related funding have come from international sources with the UNDP being of great support through its signature programmes.
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    Book (series)
    Terminal evaluation of “Strengthening capacity for climate change adaptation through support to integrated watershed management in Lesotho”
    Project symbol: GCP/LES/049/LDF - GEF ID: 5124
    2021
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    Climate change variability has impacts on Lesotho’s wetlands, which are host to a significant portion of the country’s predominately agricultural economy. Intervening in this sector could potentially increase food security and reduce poverty. FAO was called upon to implement sustainable land and water management practices and resource conservation in an effort to reduce the affected communities’ vulnerability while increasing their capacity to adapt to the effects of climate change. The evaluation found the project to be effective in improving the livelihoods and quality of life of the affected communities. It has been particularly relevant to Lesotho’s national priorities focusing on sustainable land management and drought management. Future projects should place more attention on gender issues, particularly showcasing how women’s livelihoods have been improved by FAO intervention.
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    Project
    Technical Support for the Establishment of the Lesotho Soils Information System (LESIS) - TCP/LES/3602 2020
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    Lesotho is a landlocked country completely surrounded by the Republic of South Africa More than 76 percent of the country’s population lives in rural areas, where the main source of income is subsistence rain fed agriculture Land use patterns in Lesotho have been mainly determined by historical circumstances and agro ecological conditions In the past, hilltops and mountain sides were used as fortresses and many settlements were confined to these strategic locations, while flat plains and fertile valleys were used for crop farming and remote mountains for grazing This has largely remained the pattern of land use in the country although population pressure and urbanization have forced widespread encroachment of settlements in areas traditionally reserved for agriculture The shortage of arable agricultural land has also tended to concentrate cultivation on mountain slopes, with devastating results for slope and soil stability, a decrease in the quality of rangelands and reduced agricultural productivity The country’s soils are thus under severe pressure as a result of natural conditions and human activities, triggering soil erosion, land degradation and depletion of soil organic matter Soil data in Lesotho are limited and the lack of systematic and organized soil information impedes the management and monitoring of soil properties.

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