FRW news in brief

    | March 31, 2014

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    1-Sudan: Cooking for carbon credits

    A new project in Sudan’s western Darfur region is offering efficient cookstoves for sale and helping give the country its first carbon credits.

    The carbon credit program was established in 2003 by the Worldwide Fund for Nature and 80 other NGO partners worldwide. It enables individuals, corporations and governments to buy carbon credits in exchange for verified reductions in greenhouse gas emissions and financing of sustainable development projects.

    According to Gold Standard, a certification body for carbon offsets, the program’s 10,000 cookstoves will save more than 300,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions over 10 years. The stoves are also expected to bring social, economic and health benefits, such as less smoke in homes.

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    2-South Sudan: Food crisis in swamplands

    Over three million South Sudanese people are currently in an “emergency” or “crisis” phase of food insecurity, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change classification system. To add to the difficulties, the coming rainy season will make much of South Sudan inaccessible.

    The World Food Program warned last year that four million South Sudanese would be food insecure. By February 2014, that figure had been revised to seven million, almost two-thirds of the country’s population.

    Even in a normal year, at least 10 per cent of the population experience severe seasonal food insecurity, regardless of agricultural performance. In the swamplands of the Sudd region, tens of thousands have been displaced by the fighting and are living with little food on inaccessible islands.

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    3-Liberia: Student farmers back on the soil and in classrooms

    Ten years after the end of Liberia’s 14-year conflict, agriculture accounts for over 60 per cent of the country’s GDP, and the majority of Liberians aged 16 to 35 are subsistence farmers.

    Before two civil wars ravaged Liberia, agriculture was a main topic of education for youth. Now, it is returning to the curriculum. Twenty-two young farmers have been given the opportunity to learn agriculture and processing techniques in the field during the day, with reading, writing, and arithmetic classes in the evening.

    The new back-to-school garden initiative, piloted in the central Grand Bassa County, will be expanded to five more counties this year.

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