Latin American Countries Cooperate In Innovative Plan To Tackle Climate Change In Arid Regions

2 Sep 2020 by Staff - Water Diplomat

A new project was launched in August to enable people in the semiarid regions of Latin America to work together to share knowledge, address the climate crisis, and find more sustainable and humane ways to live.

The DAKI-Semiárido Vivo Project (or Dryland Adaptation Knowledge Initiative), launched in August, will focus on three dry areas of Latin America most vulnerable to the effects of climate change: Gran Chaco Americano (in Argentina, Paraguay and Bolivia), the Central American Dry Corridor and the semiarid region of north-eastern Brazil. These areas, which are amongst the poorest of these countries, are home to at least 37 million people.

The rural population of these areas, whose livelihoods largely depend on farming, face many challenges to meet even their basic needs. Water scarcity results in difficulties in accessing water both for household use and agricultural production, which affects people’s food security and quality of life.

The project will bring together a number of actors, including researchers, farmers, civil society organisations and governments.

They’ll collaborate to identify local practices and technologies that have already succeeded in achieving economic, ecological and social benefits. They’ll document and systemise best practice, and technicians and farmers will be trained in these resilient agricultural techniques.

One example of these technologies, developed in Brazil, is an underground dam designed to contain underground flow, from a natural or artificial aquifer, by using an impermeable barrier. This keeps the surrounding soil moist, a technique that will be important for the Central American Dry Corridor, which faces challenges in infiltrating rainwater into soil.

The initiative, which will run for four years, will involve 2,000 people. And 6,000 people will benefit indirectly from the training.

The project is financed by the International Fund for Agricultural Development and is being implemented by the Brazilian Semiarid Articulation, the Argentinean Foundation for Development in Justice and Peace and the National Development Foundation of El Salvador.