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  • 1. RE-GREENING IN NIGER: What are the key success factors and exploring strategies for scaling up Abasse Tougiani and Dennis Garrity
  • 2. THE SITUATION IN THE EARLY 1980s • Cereal yields low and falling (below 400 kg/ha) • Structural food deficits • Groundwater table dropping (about 1 m/year) • Large-scale degradation of vegetation • Rural-urban and rural-rural migration intensifies
  • 3. Drought in the 1970s and 1980s …
  • 4. REACTIONS IN THE 1980s TO THE CRISIS • Awareness of the role of trees in agricultural production in particular and in the survival of households in general characterized the younger generation; • How to bring the tree (which we destroyed) in the soil? • A great idea part of an observation: sowing in the fields of wanderers where clearing was done late outperformed in the fields of those who cleared in time (that is to say, who laid bare their fields ) before planting. • It was then that everyone saves trees in his field while avoiding cutting operations during soil preparation; • Promotion of Farmer Managed Natural Regeneration.
  • 5. Farmer Managed Natural Regeneration (FMNR) What it is? • Systematic regeneration of living and sprouting tree stumps. This ‘shrub’ is actually the sprouting stump of a tree which has been chopped down. Few forestry or agro-forestry projects take into account the tremendous potential of these existing resources After just one year the numerous stems are growing vigorously and straight. Ideally, one or two are harvested from the clump each year, always leaving new regrowth to replace them.
  • 6. Reasons for the successful spread of FMNR in Niger • Conducive legal environment: granting informal approval for farmers to be able to reap the benefits of their labours. A cleared way for FMNR to spread unimpeded. Without this sense of ownership, FMNR could never take hold and spread; • Inclusive governance structures: Inclusion of all stakeholders in decision making has been pivotal to the successful adoption and spread of FMNR. Committees comprise women, men and youth, village residents and sedentary Fulani herders living outside the villages. Membership is decided through a vote by all community members. • Simplicity and cost effectiveness • Accessibility • Profitability • Self-replicating • The scale of farmer-managed re-greening in Niger
  • 7. Potential pathways and opportunities for up- scaling FMNR in northern Nigeria Comparative Overview of Terroirs on Opposite Sides of the Niger-Nigeria Border Niger Nigeria
  • 8. Potential pathways and opportunities for up-scaling FMNR in northern Nigeria (cont.) Why is it important to scale existing farmer managed re- greening? • Agroforestry systems, pillar of future agriculture in Africa’s drylands and sub-humid regions; • Help smallholder farmers create more complex, more productive and drought-resilient farming systems; • On-farm trees not only increase food security, but they also help farmers to adapt to climate change, produce more fodder for livestock and a wide range of other benefits; • Increasing the number of on-farm trees is only a first essential step; more is needed to significantly increase crop yields for a rapidly growing population • Big advantage of on-farm trees is that they help maintain or improve soil organic matter, which makes it rational for farmers to begin using small quantities of inorganic fertilizers.
  • 9. Scaling existing re-greening successes: how do you do it? Working at the grass root • Organize farmer-to-farmer visits; • Farmer experts train farmers and herders; • Support or develop village institutions; • Introduce agroforestry competitions at different levels; • Develop a movement of non-governmental organisations and civil society organisations and build their capacity to promote re-greening by farmers (men and women); INVOLVE GOVERNMENT (TOP-DOWN MEETS BOTTOM-UP) • Adapt national agricultural policies and forestry legislation; • Mainstream re-greening into existing and new agricultural development projects; • Organize field visits for national policymakers; • Create a Presidential Award for the best re-greening/agroforestry village;
  • 10. Scaling existing re-greening successes: how do you do it? (cont.) • DEVELOP A COMMUNICATION STRATEGY • Use the mass media to inform farmers and herders; • Link ICT, radio and internet (develop a “web of speech”); • Produce documentaries for national TV; • Organize national and regional experience sharing workshops; • Mobilize African champions to promote re-greening; • Mobilize international media; • Develop advocacy at all levels; ROLE OF THE MARKET IN SCALING UP • Support the development of agroforestry value chains; • Induce or support the private sector to develop input/output markets
  • 11. It is possible to improve the livelihoods of millions of farmers in Africa !!

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