Mainstreaming Disaster Risk Management/Reduction in the Agriculture Sector

What the Project is about

Photography Credit: Stabroek NewsPhotography Credit: Stabroek News

The ADRM project will build on the achievements of past and ongoing UNDP and FAO initiatives in DRM.

The development goal of the project is to strengthen national capacity to mainstream DRM/DRR in the agriculture sector and to build resilience for sustainable livelihoods in the sector against disasters.

The project will lead to the following major benefits:
(a) Strengthened institutional and coordination mechanisms and technical capacities for DRM/DRR mainstreaming in the agriculture sector. The enhanced institutional and coordination mechanisms will facilitate the cooperation of all stakeholders in ADRM thereby providing the means by which the sector can not only shorten its recovery response period, but also manage disaster risk reduction and mitigation efforts;

(b) strengthened technical capacity of national institutions to employ DRR tools, practices and approaches in support of farming communities. The cadre of persons trained will be immediately available to support national efforts at DRM/DRR, and to train other individuals, thereby maximizing the impact and sustainability of the intervention;

(c) strengthened capacity of farming communities to be resilient towards disasters. Community based DRM approaches will be piloted in selected coastal communities; and,

(d) Public awareness activities and dissemination of information on DRR practices and approaches among coastal farming communities supported. The importance of awareness building and dissemination of information on DRR practices and approaches among farming communities cannot be overly emphasized.

 

Introduction

In February 2016, the Government of Japan approved a USD 299,855 grant in support of building resilience and sustainable livelihood, to be implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), in collaboration with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and key stakeholders in the agriculture sector.

This project is built on the momentum of past and ongoing UNDP and FAO projects and initiatives in the field of DRM. In 2013, through a UNDP project: “Strengthening National and Local Capacity for Disaster Response and Risk Reduction”, support was provided to enhance national capacities of national emergency management agencies, and line ministries, to coordinate disaster response effectively. Support was also provided to strengthen communities’ capacities in disaster risk assessment and response planning. FAO provided technical assistance to develop a Disaster Risk Management Plan for the Agricultural Sector in Guyana in 2013.

 

Justification



Historically, the agriculture sector plays an important role in Guyana’s economy, and in 2015 the sector accounted for approximately 25 percent of national Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and provided more than 33 percent of direct employment. Agriculture is a source of livelihood for many small scale farmers, livestock holders, fishers, etc., who are affected by natural hazards and disasters such as floods and droughts. In 2012, the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) ranked Guyana 13 out of 162 countries for flood risk, and reported that 0.69 percent and 0.42 percent of the population and GDP, respectively, are exposed to the effect of flooding.

Climate change is expected to worsen Guyana’s vulnerability, reversing improvements to food security, poverty reduction and agriculture development. Susceptibility analysis of the low lying coastal plain concluded that a significant portion of land would be inundated with large negative impacts to the rice sector. Sugar cane and mixed farming, cash crops, coconuts and livestock will also be affected. Expected climatic changes will impose additional stress on water resources and the drainage and irrigation network within the coastal zone. Adapting to climate change within the agriculture sector is therefore an imperative. Risk sensitive agriculture is a prerequisite for food security and sustainable development.

Disaster Risk Management Plan for the Agricultural Sector 2013 -2018
Disaster Risk Management Plan for the Agricultural Sector 2013 -2018

 

There is hence a vital need to strengthen the enabling environment of responsible institutions to support the DRM/DRR mainstreaming into the agriculture sector in Guyana, with the aim of fostering better coordination and implementation of the Ministry of Agriculture’s DRM Plan for the Agriculture Sector 2013-2018. Moreover, there is also the need to build resilience for sustainable livelihoods in the agriculture sector.

With the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 launched in 2015, countries commit fully to embed risk reduction within their development agendas and to enhance delivery of local actions, including through agriculture. The project will contribute towards the achievement of the outcome and goal of the Post 2015 Framework.

Overall Goal, Objectives, Outcomes, Outputs and expected Deliverables

The development goal: To strengthen national capacity in mainstreaming DRM into the agriculture sector and build resilience of sustainable livelihoods against disaster, especially focusing on agricultural communities to contribute to securing livelihoods of the communities and national food security.

The specific objectives foreseeable from the activities are, inter alia:

To strengthen the enabling environment within the responsible government institutions to support the mainstreaming of DRM in the agricultural sector;

To strengthen technical capacity of government institutions to employ Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) tools, practices and approaches, in support of farming communities, for disaster preparedness and response in the agriculture sector;

  • To strengthen capacity of agricultural communities to be resilient towards disaster events;
  • To support public awareness and education on DRR approaches and practices to stakeholders in agriculture.        

Who financed it?

Government of Japan - USD 299,855

Historically, the agriculture sector plays an important role in Guyana’s economy, and in 2015 the sector accounted for approximately 25 percent of national Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and provided more than 33 percent of direct employment. Agriculture is a source of livelihood for many small scale farmers, livestock holders, fishers, etc., who are affected by natural hazards and disasters such as floods and droughts. In 2012, the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) ranked Guyana 13 out of 162 countries for flood risk, and reported that 0.69 percent and 0.42 percent of the population and GDP, respectively, are exposed to the effect of flooding.

Climate change is expected to worsen Guyana’s vulnerability, reversing improvements to food security, poverty reduction and agriculture development. Susceptibility analysis of the low lying coastal plain concluded that a significant portion of land would be inundated with large negative impacts to the rice sector. Sugar cane and mixed farming, cash crops, coconuts and livestock will also be affected. Expected climatic changes will impose additional stress on water resources and the drainage and irrigation network within the coastal zone. Adapting to climate change within the agriculture sector is therefore an imperative. Risk sensitive agriculture is a prerequisite for food security and sustainable development.