Director-General QU Dongyu says smallholder farmers a key focus of collective efforts
The Living Indus initiative is a reflection FAO's key message to COP28: agrifood solutions are climate solutions
Dubai - “Learning together, thinking together, designing together and contributing together, with the various partners taking ownership” - these are keys to the successful implementation of an initiative to restore the ecological health of the River Indus in Pakistan, QU Dongyu, Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) said today at a side event of the COP28 climate talks.
Land and water expertise
Underlining the expertise that FAO offers with a division combining land and water issues and its commitment to work with the range of other partners involved, Qu said the initiative, in which FAO has been engaged since its inception two years ago, is a reflection of the Organization’s key message to COP28: agrifood solutions are climate solutions.
Qu also stressed the potential of FAO initiatives such as the Hand-in Hand Geospatial Platform and the concept of the One Country One Priority Product to contribute to addressing agrifood systems transformation.
Among the others addressing the event were Pakistan’s Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar, Adil Najam, President of the Worldwide Fund for Nature and Dean Emeritus and Boston University; Rachael McDonnell, Deputy Director-General of the International Water Management Institute and Xiaohong Yang, Deputy Director-General for Central and West Asia at the Asian Development Bank.
Living Indus is a multi-stakeholder initiative embracing actions and advocacy to restore the health of the Pakistani section of the trans-boundary river. After broad-based consultations, a ‘living’ menu of 25 preliminary interventions was drawn up, which focus on ecosystem-based adaptation approaches to protect, conserve, and restore natural, terrestrial, freshwater, coastal and marine ecosystems in the Indus Basin.
Through the initiative, FAO is working with the Government and other key partners to facilitate improved water management in the agriculture sector throughout the Indus Basin and improved on-farm practices for smallholders that can build their climate resilience.