The world's biodiversity is in trouble, with wildlife crime, the spread of invasive species, and loss of habitat reducing the number of species. The loss has economy-wide consequences, but biodiversity is especially important for the 870 million rural poor whose livelihoods and safety nets are inextricably linked to natural and semi-natural ecosystems.
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In the Andes of South America and across the mountains of Central Asia, the glaciers are receding. As temperatures continue to warm, their melting will bring more water to farms and cities earlier in ... Show More +the growing season, raising the risks of damaging floods. Within a few decades, however, the risk of flood will become risk of drought. Without action to stop the drivers of climate change, most of the Andean glaciers and two-thirds of Central Asia’s glaciers could be gone by the end of the century.These changes are already underway, with global temperatures 0.8 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial times, and the impact on food security, water supplies and livelihoods is just beginning.A new report exploring the impact of climate change in Latin America and the Caribbean, the Middle East and North Africa, and Eastern Europe and Central Asia and finds that warming of close to 1.5°C above pre-industrial times is already locked into the Earth’s atmospheric system by past and predicted greenhouse gas emissions. Without concerted action to reduce emissions, the planet is on pace for 2°C warming by mid-century and 4°C or more by the time today’s teenagers are in their 80s.The report warns that as temperatures rise, heat extremes on par with the heat waves in the United States in 2012 and Russia in 2010 will become more common. Melting permafrost will release methane, a powerful greenhouse gas that will drive more warming in a dangerous feedback loop. Forests, including the Amazon, are also at risk. A world even 1.5°C will mean more severe droughts and global sea level rise, increasing the risk of damage from storm surges and crop loss and raising the cost of adaptation for millions of people.“Today’s report confirms what scientists have been saying – past emissions have set an unavoidable course of warming over the next two decades, which will affect the world’s poorest and most vulnerable people the most,” World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim said. “We cannot continue down the current path of unchecked, growing emissions.”As governments gather in Lima for the next round of climate negotiations, this report and others provide direction and evidence of the risks and the need for ambitious goals to decarbonize economies now. Turn Down the HeatTurn Down the Heat: Confronting the New Climate Normal is the third in a series of reports commissioned by the World Bank Group from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research and Climate Analytics. The first report looked at risks globally if the world were to warm by 4°C. The second report focused on three regions – Africa, South Asia, and South East Asia – and the risks to food security, water security, and low-lying cities exposed to dangerous sea level rise and vulnerability to storms.The new report comes on the heels of strong new warnings from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) about the pace of climate change and the energy transformations necessary to stay within 2°C warming. Show Less -
A growing population and changing diets are driving up the demand for food. Production is struggling to keep up as crop yields level off in many parts of the world, ocean health declines and natural r... Show More +esources—including soils, water or biodiversity—are stretched dangerously thin. Food stocks are already at threateningly low levels. 1 in 8 people suffers from chronic hunger and more than 1 billion people are undernourished. The food security challenge will only get more difficult, as the world will need to produce at least 50 percent more food by 2050 to feed 9 billion people.The challenge is intensified by agriculture’s extreme vulnerability to climate change. Climate change’s negative impacts are already being felt, in the form of reduced yields and more frequent extreme weather events. Substantial investments in adaptation will be required to maintain current yields and achieve the increases that are needed. While there is significant variation across crops, regions and adaptation scenarios, the majority of models predict a yield reduction of more than 5% with around 10% of projections expecting yield losses of more than 25% (IPCC, 2014).Agriculture is also a major part of the climate problem. It currently generates 19–29% of total GHG emissions. Without action, that percentage could rise substantially as other sectors reduce their emissions.Producing More with LessTo be sustainable, agriculture needs to produce more food on less land. It also needs to be resilient to extreme weather and minimize its negative impact on the environment.Climate-Smart Agriculture (CSA) is an approach to managing landscapes—cropland, livestock, forests and fisheries—that aims to achieve three outcomes:1. Increased productivity: Produce more food to improve food and nutrition security and boost the incomes of 75 percent of the world’s poor, many of whom rely on agriculture for their livelihoods.2. Enhanced resilience: Reduce vulnerability to drought, pests, disease and other shocks; and improve capacity to adapt and grow in the face of longer-term stresses like shortened seasons and erratic weather patterns.3. Reduced emissions: Pursue lower emissions for each calorie or kilo of food produced, avoid deforestation from agriculture and identify ways to suck carbon out of the atmosphere.CSA promotes practices that enable progress on the three outcomes such as silvo-pastoralism in livestock, alternate wetting and drying of rice crops, agroforestry and conservation agriculture. CSA’s focus on outcomes allows it to embrace any policy, approach, technology, practice or product that can deliver progress across the three outcomes in any context.Climate-Smart Agriculture and the World Bank GroupThe World Bank Group works with countries to support farmers so that they can earn and produce more in the face of climate shocks and reduce harmful emissions from each kilo they produce. It also backs research programs such as the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR), which develops drought-and-flood resistance food crops, early warning systems, risk insurance and other innovations that promote resilience to climate change.Working Towards Food and Nutrition SecurityThe Bank’s support of CSA is making a difference:In Ethiopia, the Humbo Assisted Natural Regeneration Project has helped restore 2,700 hectares of biodiverse native forest, which has boosted production of income-generating wood and tree products such as honey and fruit.In Niger, farming systems now include trees that capture nitrogen.In Vietnam, alternate wetting and drying techniques have intensified production, resulting in increased yields and dramatic reductions in the amount of seed (70%) and water (-33%) required, as well as the amount of nitrogen fertilizer used (-25%).African farmers who have adopted evergreen agriculture are reaping impressive results without the use of costly fertilizers. Crop yields often increase by 30 percent and sometimes more. In Zambia, for example, maize yields tripled when grown under Faidherbia trees.In China, a major reforestation program to protect watersheds and control erosion has returned the devastated Loess Plateau to sustainable agricultural production, improving the lives of 2.5 million people and securing food supplies in an area where food was sometimes scarce. An estimated 20 million more people in China have benefited from the replication of this approach in other areas.In Rwanda, a hillside erosion project is having dramatic results. Through terracing, improved soil cultivation, better water run-off management, and irrigation systems, farmers reported an immediate increase in yields and income. Show Less -
IDA Grant: US $40.0 million equivalentProject ID: P131965Project Description: The objectives of the project are to increase the effective management of the conservation areas and enhance the living co... Show More +nditions of communities in and around the conservation areas. Show Less -
WASHINGTON, November 18, 2014 — The World Bank Group’s Board of Executive Directors today approved a US$40 million International Development Association (IDA)* grant to support the implementation of t... Show More +he Government of Mozambique’s Conservation Areas for Biodiversity and Development Project, known as Mozbio. This program benefits from an additional US$6.3 million grant provided by the Global Environment Facility (GEF).Mozambique’s Conservation Areas (CAs) are made of diverse habitats that include a coastline with some of the most spectacular coral reefs in the world. The country possesses over 5,500 plant species, 222 mammal and 600 bird species. Despite such a rich biodiversity, poverty rates are extremely high across the population living within and around CAs, and the level of revenues from and investments to conservation related tourism is very low.The Mozbio Project will strengthen the way CAs are protected and improve the lives of communities in and around the area through activities that establish efficient management and promote tourism, as well as create jobs, business opportunities and other sustainable livelihood efforts that focus on conservation and biodiversity.“We want to help the country unleash the economic potential of conservation and tourism as means to foster sustainable poverty alleviation,” said Mark Lundell, World Bank Country Director for Mozambique, Madagascar, Mauritius, Seychelles and Comoros. “Integrated conservation development activities, such as conservation agriculture or sustainable forestry (including harvesting of non-timber forest products), as well as ecotourism create incentives for conservation among local communities and local governments, which in turn reduces the pressure on natural resources.”The MozBio Project will address some of the most pressing challenges to CAs management, including strengthening institutional and policy framework for conservation, improving CAs management, particularly for marine CAs which has the greatest tourism potential, as well as broadening the livelihood options to communities living in and around the CAs. The project serves as a platform to address threats to conservation of Mozambique’s natural capital, promote nature-based tourism growth, integrated landscape management, and reducing high poverty levels around CAs.“I’m happy we reached such an important milestone in this project life-cycle,” said Mr. Soto, the head of National Administration of Conservation Areas (ANAC). “This four-year project focuses on reducing rural poverty through improved schemes to share benefits from conservation and nature based-tourism to communities, increase conservation-related job creation and business opportunities in the agriculture, forestry and fisheries sectors; and promote alternative livelihood activities that encourage communities to reduce destructive practices, such as poaching or deforestation”The project will also promote innovative mechanisms to ensure sustainable financing of CAs, including the design and capitalization of an endowment fund to attract financing from different sectors (public, private, etc.): the so-called Biofund (Foundation for the Conservation of Biodiversity). The project will also bring positive social and environmental benefits at local, national and global levels. It is estimated that over 11,200 households (around 56,000 people) will benefit directly from the project. At the national level, the government will benefit through a stronger institutional framework for conservation and tourism promotion, as well as tax revenues from increased tourism activities around CAs. Protecting large areas of land has environmental benefits at the global level, both in terms of globally-important terrestrial and marine biodiversity and reduction of greenhouse gas emissions given CAs’ role in protecting forests and other carbon-rich habitats (such as wetlands and mangroves) from deforestation and degradation.This project supports the GoM poverty reduction strategy and contributes to the World Bank Country Partnership Strategy for Mozambique (2012-15), which has an overarching goal of promoting broad-based, inclusive, and pro-poor growth, and it is consistent with GEF strategies and policies to promote biodiversity conservation and climate change mitigation.* The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), established in 1960, helps the world’s poorest countries by providing grants and low to zero-interest loans for projects and programs that boost economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve poor people’s lives. IDA is one of the largest sources of assistance for the world’s 77 poorest countries, 39 of which are in Africa. Resources from IDA bring positive change for 2.8 billion people living on less than $2 a day. Since 1960, IDA has supported development work in 112 countries. Annual commitments have averaged about $18 billion over the last three years, with about 50 percent going to Africa. Show Less -