Click here to learn more about the Impact Organisation
The dramatic increase in climate-related calamities like increasing occurrence of extreme climate hazards have exacerbated the high vulnerability of poor indigenous communities. Communities are isolated when access roads are impassable due to landslides and heavy rains. Limited coping strategies and weak adaptive capacity to climate change result to low yield in agricultural production. They remain in subsistence level and hardly sufficient to meet basic needs. Some rice fields have been abandoned due to lack of water supply. New pests and diseases in crops and livestock threaten the farmers’ produce. Forest resources are diminished due to forest fires and increased timber harvesting without determined efforts to reforest. Wildlife has decreased. Traditional Indigenous Resources Management System has significantly weakened. Chemical-intensive farming have continuously put environmental pressure and impacted on the habitat, water and forests. Massive use of chemical fertilisers and pesticides has contributed to toxic emissions that continuously pollute the soil, water and air. Forests and protected areas like watersheds are continuously converted into vegetable gardens to support the increasing demand of upland vegetables. The continuing deforestation aggravated also carbon dioxide emission. Because of these drastic changes, Indigenous communities are confused and had to struggle to cope with erratic climate variability.
To cope with the consequences of the climate crisis and to adapt to chaotic climate change, there is a need for strategic interventions to respond effectively to the aforedescribed changing socio-economic and geo-physical landscape of indigenous, upland communities. First is to promote locally-driven and people-led adaptation measures to cope with the consequences of erratic climate changes and calamities. Second is to increase the awareness and enhance local knowledge and skills that ensure full ownership of social process through grassroots information drive, adoption of relevant traditional indigenous practices and knowledge system enriched with appropriate innovations in agro-ecological practices. Examples are the use of bio-indicators and traditional methods of weather forecasting that guided effectively the farmers when to plant and harvest. Biodiversity conservation have to be promoted. Climate resilient and restorative agricultural system have to be developed. Relevant and efficient indigenous traditional agriculture and material resource management system have to be strengthened. Biodiversity in restored forests should be enhanced by increasing and sustaining community participation in socio-restorative, protective and biodiversity conservation efforts. These community – based mechanisms and systems to climate resilience and adaptation have to be institutionalized to ensure sustainability.
Climate-smart agriculture practice that sustainably increase productivity of farmers. It also enhance food security and preserving the natural resource base. The farming system can also boost higher farmer incomes; climate mitigation through reduced greenhouse gas emissions; and increased resilience and adaptation to climate change. Climate-smart agriculture includes approaches and techniques ranging from inter-cropping, multi-cropping and integrated crop-livestock management to improved water, soil, and nutrient management.