News archive 2010
FAO is distributing large quantities of emergency seeds and animal feed in Niger and Chad as chronic malnutrition rates reach 16 percent following last year's erratic rains. It is part of a large ongoing humanitarian effort to avoid a repeat of the 2005 crisis. An estimated 9.8 million people are now vulnerable to severe hunger in the two countries, with thousands more under threat in Burkina Faso and Mali.
The dairy sector accounts for around four percent of all global anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions. This figure includes both emissions associated with the production, processing and transportation of milk products as well as emissions related to meat produced from animals originating from the dairy system.
Fighting wildfires requires participation by local communities, since most fires are caused by human activities. FAO has published a new version of its "Wildland Fire Management Handbook for Trainers," which calls for a more integrated approaches to fire management, including not only detection and suppression but also prevention and preparedness.
Concerted international action has successfully eliminated the deadly H5N1 avian influenza virus from poultry in almost all the 63 countries it infected at the peak of the world outbreak in 2006 but it persists in five nations and poses a continuing threat to global animal and human health.
A new FAO toolkit aims to sharpen the focus of anti-hunger and development efforts by helping countries gather more accurate information on differences between men and women in agriculture. This kind of detailed information allows planners to tailor their efforts and support those who lack access to productive resources.
A financing scheme designed by FAO to allow African smallholder farmers to make more money is to be scaled up in Niger, where it was pioneered, and will be extended to Burkina Faso, Mali and Senegal as well. The "warrantage" approach lets farmers use their crops as collateral for investment loans.
FAO has completed the first round of blanket distributions to farming families in Haiti’s South and South-West departments that were directly affected by the 12 January earthquake. The UN food agency is now targeting the rest of the country.
Vietnamese experts will help Chad implement a series of activities aimed at improving the African country's food security under a tripartite South-South Cooperation agreement signed at FAO. The activities include irrigation for rice growing and horticulture, increased cereals production, artisanal fishing, bee-keeping and food processing.
World deforestation, mainly the conversion of tropical forests to agricultural land, has decreased over the past ten years but it continues at an alarmingly high rate in many countries, according to key findings of FAO's most comprehensive forest review to date, The Global Forest Resources Assessment 2010.
An international team of experts has warned that while more is known today about the role of wild birds in the spread of the highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza virus than ever before, significant information gaps remain unfilled as government and public attention is shifting elsewhere.