sustainability

Africa will be able to feed itself in the next 15 years. That’s one of the big “bets on the future” that Bill and Melinda Gates have made in their foundation’s latest annual letter. Helped by other breakthroughs in health, mobile banking and education, they argue that the lives of people in poor countries “will improve faster in the next 15 years than at any other time in history”.

The International Social Science Council (ISSC) has awarded Kathleen Galvin  (Anthropology, SoGES), a Transformations to Sustainability grant of € 30,000 for 6 months  to develop a Transformative Knowledge Network on the World’s Rangelands through Social Change.  Galvin and her team will bring together researchers and practitioners from Kenya, Mongolia and the US Great Plains to CSU to develop a large three-year proposal for an internationally comparative research program on rangeland sustainability.

An initiative to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from landfill sites in Cameroon cannot be expanded to other Central African countries as planned due to a lack of income from the troubled global carbon market, while facilities to convert trapped methane into cheap cooking gas have also been put on hold.

agriculture, ecosystems, and environment journal cover

Poverty alleviation in rural areas is a top priority for social and economic development, particularly against a backdrop of rising populations up to 2050 and to meet growing food demands in a rapidly urbanizing world. Sustainable intensification of agricultural techniques are therefore required, such as water management practices that result in higher agricultural production without causing severe environmental impacts, whilst at the same time improving resilience to drought and dry spells.

Trees inside and outside forests contribute to food security in Africa in the face of climate variability and change. They also provide environmental and social benefits as part of farming livelihoods. Varied ecological and socio-economic conditions have given rise to specific forms of agroforestry in different parts of Africa. Policies that institutionally segregate forest from agriculture miss opportunities for synergy at landscape scale.  More explicit inclusion of agroforestry and the integration of agriculture and forestry agendas in global initiatives on climate change adaptation and mitigation can increase their effectiveness. We identify research gaps and overarching research questions for the contributions in this special issue that may help shape current opinion in environmental sustainability.

WCNR-Ethiopia Strategic Alliance

Based out of the Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory, the WCNR-Ethiopia Strategic Alliance is a consortium of U.S. and Ethiopian partners.   The WCNR-Ethiopia Strategic Alliance's mission is to foster stewardship, conservation and sustainable-use of natural resources through international education, research and engagement.

Climate change is already affecting the livelihoods of West African smallholder farmers who rely on rain-fed agricultural techniques, and it is expected to make food shortages more acute as the region’s population continues to grow. However, some experts have proposed that an integrated approach to land management that ensures sustainable policies could help agriculture-dependent West Africa cope with the looming effects of climate change.

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