The Great Green Wall
The Great Green Wall for the Sahara and Sahel Initiative: a mosaic of sustainable land use practices
to build local resilience to land degradation and climate change in 20 countries
The Great Green Wall for the Sahara and the Sahel Initiative (GGWSSI) is a pan-African programme launched in 2007 by the African Union (AU). Its goal is to reverse land degradation and desertification in the Sahel and Sahara, boost food security and support local communities to adapt to climate change. The initiative has evolved to become a sustainable regional land-use planning program.
The vision of a Great Green Wall in Africa is a metaphor that shapes a mosaic of interventions in the sustainable use of lands and community land management practices.
The Great Green Wall offers the opportunity to change the situation in Africa, with the possibility to build local resilience to climate change, to preserve the rural heritage and improve the livelihoods of local populations.
The Initiative brings together more than 20 African countries as well as international partners to implement long-term solutions against land degradation and desertification.
As land and rural development management is a complex issue, it became necessary to create a strong partnership for the success of the initiative. It is therefore based on a spirit of regional solidarity and South-south exchange to promote best practices and share lessons learned. Full participation of local communities is at the heart of the planning, implementation and management of the projects in support of the objectives of the Initiative.
More than 50,000,000 euros were mobilized by the partners for regional and South-south cooperation, monitoring, capacity development, knowledge management and cross-border actions under the Great Green Wall for the Sahara and Sahel Initiative.
The achievements of the Initiative!
The Initiative aims to replicate good practices in the Sahel-Saharan region.
• In Burkina Faso, Senegal and Niger: a mechanized technology inspired by traditional practices known as the Vallerani system, helped restore more than 50,000 hectares of agro-silvo-pastoral systems with Acacia
• In Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger and in Ethiopia: farmer-assisted natural regeneration has played a fundamental role in the creation of multiple livelihoods and local environmental benefits.
• In Niger: the Government has defined pastoral modernization areas based on the concept of semi pastoralism and centered on a distributed network of water points to improve the passage of herds and improve forage production.
The challenges of the Initiative!
• promoting the Great Green Wall as Africa’s flagship programme for achieving the Rio + 20 targets of a land-degradation neutral world and the development of resilient lands, providing livelihoods for people,
• integrate the Initiative in key planning,
• Encourage national Governments to demonstrate their commitment to the Initiative through the funding of national GGWSSI action plans,
• Promote South-South cooperation and triangular cooperation as a key strategy for implementing the Great Green Wall in particular mutual learning to improve effective investment,
• Encourage partnership with emerging countries and ACP countries on the transfer of technology and best practices.