Thursday, December 27, 2012

Working for better pastoralists livelihood in Ethiopia

The Ethiopian Herald: Characterized by erratic rainfall and high mean temperatures, Ethiopia's dry land accounts for 60 per cent of the country's landmass. These areas have most effectively supported the pastoral livelihood system. Pastoralism converts periodic rainfall and patchy vegetation into nutritional and economic value through the sale and consumption of livestock and other related products.

This requires reliable access and efficient utilization of scarce natural resources across vast terrains to support livestock herds. As Ethiopia has showing a rapid progress by about 11 per cent annual growth rate since 2004, the pastoral regions have come under increasing pressure from a range of anthropogenic factors. Population expansion, resource base diminishing and climate change are the factors affecting per capital livestock holdings. Due to these elements, the productivity of those animals is decreasing and pastoralism has been compromised.

At the same time, these challenges are tied with opportunities that can have positive, significant and those transitioning out of pastoralism. As part of its Growth and Transformation Plan, the Government of Ethiopia has renewed strategies to maximize land and resource productivity and demonstrated commitment to natural resource management at the watershed level, even.

In this regard, the U.S government developed a new five year Pastoralist Resilience Improvement and Market Expansion (PRIME) programme to promote adaptation to climate change, food security and livestock market development in pastoralist areas of Ethiopia. PRIME will support improved Natural Resource Management (NRM) in the pastoral areas at a landscape level. The programme proposes a multistakeholder engagement approach to NRM.

PRIME will also bring together government, traditional institutions, and community representatives across districts and zones to devise an appropriate system for effective management of pasture areas and water points which are critical inputs in the livestock production system....

The Lower Valley of the Omo River, UNESCO World Heritage Site, and inhabitants of Southern Ethiopia. Shot by AnnaMaria Donnoli, Wikimedia Commons, under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license

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