The Project titled “Support to policy consultation and actions to boost sustainable use of water and energy resources for agricultural production and livelihood improvement in the Near East Region in the context of climate change” was signed by H.E. Ekmeleddin İhsanoğlu, the Secretary General of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC) and Mr. Jacques Diouf, the Director General of Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) on 9 June 2010. The Project is a one-year project, and will be implemented in a context of a global financial crisis and will also be an opportunity to address water control projects within the framework of an undergoing program “Special Program for Food Security (SPFS)”. SESRIC has been designated as the OIC implementing agency of the Project, and a member of the Project Task Force.
The Project will cover the following OIC Member Countries: Afghanistan, Algeria, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Djibouti, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tajikistan, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, and Yemen.
The Project is based upon the fact that many countries in the region face problems related to water resource scarcity, overexploitation of groundwater resources, limited supply of fertile land, land degradation, pollution, inappropriate use of fertilizers and pesticides and recurrent droughts. On the other hands efforts to achieve the food, water and energy security targets reflected in the Millennium Development Goals call upon the international community to assist developing countries and particularly the most vulnerable groups of the society in facing new global challenges of rising food prices, water scarcity, growing energy demand, and climate change which will affect food security in all its four dimensions - food availability, food accessibility, food stability and food utilization.
The Project will carry out studies on the use of water resources, on the management strategies and on the investment needs at national level, but the various parts of the region are explicitly called to seize opportunities for more supportive integrated regional development policies and strategies, which will complement the efforts of individual member countries. It will bring together a number of other organizations, including non-governmental organizations and actors in the civil society, as well as international organizations that seek similar objectives, in order to compare experiences, share knowledge and best practices, and frame the way ahead for an immediate future of increased food and energy security, in face of the growing water scarcity, in the NENA Region.
At the end of the Project, it is expected that all the countries involved, adopting a participatory approach that engages members of the civil society and of the private sector, generate awareness on the issues of water for agriculture and energy and climate change, enhance their knowledge in the concerned fields and a better understanding of the current situation at the country and regional level, and reflect these findings into the respective National Reports.
For more information about the Project please visit: http://www.sesric.org/activities-oicfao.php