AUC, FAO partner to back Africa's Great Green Wall land restoration initiative
In an effort to find solutions to those and other challenges faced by Africa's farms, the African Union Commission (AUC) and the United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) have entered into an agreement to support a program called Great Green Wall.
Under the terms of the agreement, the two organizations will provide assistance for the Action Against Desertifcation project, which runs in tandem with the Great Green Wall program, as well as make available to the continent's farmers coordination for farming improvement efforts, farm monitoring, assessment and development services, and educational programs.
“Ever since African heads of state and government endorsed the Great Green Wall for the Sahara and the Sahel Initiative in 2007, FAO has been at the forefront of the fight against desertification,” Rhoda Peace Tumusiime, AUC's commissioner for rural economy and agriculture, said.
Patrick Kormawa, FAO’s subregional coordinator for Eastern Africa and representative to AUC, agreed.
“The African Union’s leadership has enabled this formidable alliance to which we have set out to contribute with an ambitious agenda of large scale restoration and sustainable land management across the Sahel and Sahara,” he said.
As part of the Great Green Wall program, lands across West African will be restored. Farmers will be introduced by experts to plant-base solutions and other methods through which they can boost their farms' productivity and food security, which will lead to better economic standing for them and add to Africa's economy as a whole.
Restoration efforts have already begyn in Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger.
The Great Green Wall program and the expansion of it have also received backing from the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP). The program aims to educate farmers about sustainable land management and dryland restoration while at the same time assisting with the repair of blighted land in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific.
The initiative has also received funding from the European Union as part of the 10th European Development Fund (EDF).