With climate change dominating international environment forums in recent years, the issue of maintaining biodiversity tends to be overlooked. Yet, as CIFOR scientist Terry Sunderland points out, the role biodiversity plays in food security and ecosystems means it should be placed firmly back on the global agenda.
An IUCN initiative that works to improve the livelihoods of people in West Africa has received a major boost in the form of a CHF 1.9 million grant from Switzerland’s State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO).
The rainforests of West, Central and Eastern Africa are the source of a commodity which is bringing both economic growth and biodiversity benefits to the region. An edible oil from the seeds of the indigenous Allanblackia tree is being used as an alternative for palm oil as a base for products ranging from margarine to soap, and has huge market potential.
The loss of biodiversity has a disproportionate impact on women. The ways in which water scarcity and contamination and deforestation make women’s water and fuel gathering tasks more taxing and timeconsuming is well documented. The centrality of a healthy, biologically diverse environment to the spiritual and cultural belief systems of indigenous communities, particularly indigenous women, has also received significant attention.
Biodiversity is part of the solution to climate change. For men and women in developing countries, particularly in the least developed countries, biodiversity is vital for their survival and the survival of their families. Biodiversity is also part of their belief system and their cultural and spiritual values.
Gender, Biodiversity and Local Knowledge Systems to Strengthen Agricultural and Rural Development (LinKS)Posted on: 7 April 2010 - 10:56am
The overall goal of the project was to enhance rural people’s food security and promote sustainable management of agro-biodiversity by strengthening the capacity of institutions in the agricultural sector to apply approaches that recognize men and women farmer’s knowledge in their programmes and policies.
Gender dimensions in biodiversity management and food security: policy and programme strategies for AsiaPosted on: 7 April 2010 - 10:56am
A report of the proceedings of the FAO technical consultation on the above theme, which was jointly organized with the M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation in Chennai, India from 2 to 5 November 1999. Women are the main farm producers and keepers of plant genetic wealth - food crops, medicinal plants and forest produce - in Asia-Pacific countries. But their contribution is not adequately recognised in biodiversity management and agriculture policies and plans.
Biodiversity, Livelihoods and Poverty: Lessons learned from 8 years of development aid through the Biodiversity FundPosted on: 29 March 2010 - 4:49pm
“At least 40% of the world’s economy and 80% of the needs of the poor are derived from biological resources…the richer the diversity of life, the greater the opportunity for medical discoveries, economic development, and adaptive responses to such new challenges as climate change.” What is biodiversity and why does it matter?
Where Central and South America come together, grows a rainforest that is one of the richest ecological regions of tropical America. The Indigenous peoples who live there depend on this forest for food, medicine, building materials and much more. But parts of the rainforest are being cut by outsiders, the pressure on natural resources is increasing, and the livelihoods of the Indigenous peoples are threatened.
Functional Links Between Biodiversity, Livelihoods, and Culture in a Hani Swidden Landscape in Southwest ChinaPosted on: 29 March 2010 - 4:49pm
The landscape of Mengsong, southwest China, was biologically diverse until recently due to historical biogeographical processes overlain by the swidden-cultivation practices of the Hani who migrated there several centuries ago. Our research sought to understand how the Hani adjusted their livelihoods to new policies, markets, and technologies, and the consequences for biodiversity conservation.