1st WASAG International Forum On Water Scarcity In Agriculture, Praia, Cabo Verde (19-22 march).

Impression of the "saline agriculture" session with Dr. Arjen de Vos (sitting 4th from left)

Dr. Arjen de Vos recently participated in the 1st WASAG International Forum On Water Scarcity In Agriculture,  Praia, Cabo Verde (19-22 march). This congress was organized by the Government of Cabo Verde, the Italian Ministry of Agricultural Food, Forestry and Tourism Policies and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). The congress focused on Small Island Developing States (SIDS) and West African countries.

Saline agriculture was one of the six workgroups that were set up by WASAG as a part of the congress and Dr Arjen de Vos was one of the experts in this group. The congress included a day of field visits to various locations on Cabo Verde and was followed by two days of technical sessions by the workgroups. During the congress, all the six workgroups informed each other of their respective activities.

Impression of the island, whereby it is clear that Cape Verde is a very dry island. (Day 1 field visit).
Day 2: Opening of the Congress

The Praia Commitment

As an outcome of the Congress, all the participants committed to 17 point - The Praia Commitment, which consisted of seventeen commitments. Of those two points were developed by the saline agriculture working group – Propose (#13) and Integrate (#14).

Extract of two mentioned commitments below:

13. Propose ways to live with salinity, particularly in the most vulnerable areas including Small Island Developing States, since it is possible to produce more food from salinized areas. This includes supporting national strategies and policies for tailor-made adaptive farming solutions for salt-affected areas and the implementation of sustainable saline farming systems, including agrobiodiversity, to enhance food and nutrition security and cash crops;

14. Integrate climate-smart agriculture and innovative farming systems adopting sustainable management practices and proper drought/salt tolerant crops, including in marginal areas, to enhance food and nutrition security;

The Praia Commitment will place saline agriculture on the international agenda and saline agriculture will be seen as a way to contribute to global food security.