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FAO in Mozambique

New FAO project on climate change may benefit 1800 households

68% of are Mozambicans living in rural areas are vulnerable to climate change effects.

About 1 800 households are set to benefit from a recently launched project that helps smallholder farmers adapt to climate change. The project, which was launched by FAO in Mbalane District, Gaza Province, Mozambique is titled: Strengthening integrated adaptation planning and implementation in Southern Africa smallholder agricultural systems to support food security.

Financed by Flanders Government to the tune of USD3.9 million, this project aims to support the farmers implementing strategies to minimize climate change impact which have been damaging mainly rural areas. This is a three year project to be implemented in Malawi, Mozambique and Zambia. The launch event was attended by government officials and district technicians.

Project coordinator, Jacinto Mutambe said: "This project will directly contribute to increased adaptive capacity of 80 percent of selected population in 60 communities (1 800 farm households) through adoption of good practices with an approximate crop yield and income increase of 15–20%. The community level interventions with adaptation practices will enhance resilience of 600 ha of crop area."

Some of the main objectives of the project include to: improve national capacities to use analytical techniques to assess risks, vulnerabilities and impacts of climate variability including climate extremes and change in agriculture; enhance capacities to develop policies and financing for Climate- Smart Agriculture (CSA); facilitate upscaling and implementation of climate change adaptation practices in agriculture and fisheries to enhance resilience to climate change; and strengthen country capacities to replicate good practices and access climate financing.

In Mozambique, around 80% of the population lives on agriculture, of which 68% live in rural areas and are dependent on natural resources thus are vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change. Rainfall patterns have become erratic and unpredictable as a result of climate changes, making it difficult for farmers to manage the planting cycles of their agricultural crops.

Recently, Mozambique has been affected by a severe drought, which has contributed to the increase in the number of families which are food insecure.