The Ministry of Agro Industry and Food Security and the Delegation of the European Union have awarded three new grants to the University of Mauritius, the Irrigation Authority and the Mauritius Chamber of Agriculture for the implementation of climate adaptation actions.
Projects aim at promoting climate smart agriculture initiatives among smallholders in Mauritius and Rodrigues. They will be implemented over a period of three years. The Ambassador of the European Union to the Republic of Mauritius, Marjaana Sall, stated that the European Union is committed in making the Paris Agreement work and in supporting our partners in implementing it. “Today’s grants to increasing resilience of small farmers to the effects of climate change bear testimony of EU’s strong partnership with Mauritius to fight climate change.”
The Minister of Agro Industry and Food Security, Mahen Kumar Seeruttun, on his part, said that as an island state, Mauritius is highly vulnerable to the effects of climate change. “This has a direct impact on the agricultural sector because our farming activities are directly exposed to climatic conditions. We urgently need to adopt climate smart agricultural practices to increase resilience of our small planters to the effects of climate change to ensure food security.”
During the ceremony, three grants for a total amount of more than Rs 50 million were awarded to the University of Mauritius, the Irrigation Authority and the Mauritius Chamber of Agriculture for the implementation of their projects, namely: i) Transformation of Belle Mare into a Climate- - 2 Smart Agriculture village for climate resilience, food security, and poverty alleviation of its farmers; ii) Improving Resilience of Small Holders to the effect of climate change; and iii) Smart Agriculture: Transition towards agro ecological climate-resilient food cropping systems in Mauritius.
These three grants add up to the first grant of 40 million rupees that the EU awarded to the Commission of Social Security of the Rodrigues Regional Assembly in July this year. The four grants have been awarded following a comprehensive call for proposals’ procedure. This new EU support, funded under the Global Climate Change Alliance Flagship Initiative (GCCA+), targets climate smart agriculture initiatives that will bring about an improvement in water availability to smallholders, adoption of new technologies, and reduction of greenhouse gas emissions (GHG), all leading to an increase in revenue of smallholders. This is in line with the Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) that Mauritius presented at the COP 21 Conference in 2015.