For the past 6-7 weeks, I have been carrying out my MScCCAFS research project in collaboration the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) Asia Regional Office in Hanoi, and at this point I’m just about half-way into the project period. It has been an interesting, intense and challenging experience and has certainly been a bit stretching. My research project is centered around ‘linking humanitarian and development interventions into a joint resilience continuum’ and I have been working with the Climate Change Team at CIAT Hanoi, who have been very amazing.
The project basically
involves reviewing and analyzing the World Food Programme (WFP) Country
Strategic Plans and International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) project
documents in countries where they are both present, to identity programmatic
synergies, complementarities and missing linkages between both organizations
along the resilience spectrum, and ties directly into the recent agreement for
collaboration and partnership among the United Nations Rome Based Agencies
(RBAs) on strengthening resilience and the Grand Bargain Agreement. This is achieved using a range of tools
designed by the team and the end-product is an ‘analysis brief’ that provides
information on areas of possible collaboration for WFP and IFAD to strengthen
For my research project, I have decided to choose one country each from Africa (Nigeria), Asia (Nepal) and Central America (El Salvador) as my case studies. I decided to select countries from different regions to introduce diversity to the project, but one thing they also have in common is they are all on the negative receiving end of climate variability impacts, from the desertification and resultant conflicts in northern Nigeria to the frequent natural disasters in Nepal and El Salvador.
At this stage, I’m
just about getting started on the analysis of the projects in my country case
studies and I’m thrilled to research and learn more about each of these
Keep checking to
stay updated on my progress and results…………….
Climate change is as real as the air that
we breathe! The impact of climate change over the years is why we have to build
climate resilience. Climate change is occurring and has impacts that are
beginning to show clearly that we have a global problem. These impacts continue
to increase daily and could be severe in the future, if drastic steps are not
taken to mitigate and/or adapt to its impacts.
Globally, there has been a major shift in
the seasons and an increasing frequency of extreme weather events all over. This
is as a result of a variety of factors that have weathered the atmosphere and
have rendered it weak. We need to brace ourselves for the impacts of this
changes that are mostly manmade. People are now experiencing significant
impacts of climate change, which include changing weather patterns, rising sea
levels and more extreme weather events.
The impacts of climate change vary all over
the world, hence different communities face different climate change impacts
for which they need to adapt. This is where we begin to talk about climate
resilience and actively building measures to improve climate resilience.
Climate resilience, in terms of climate change
refers to strengthening the ability of human and non-human systems to withstand
and respond to changes in the earth’s climate. There is a rising awareness by
national and international bodies to build climate resilience. Climate
resilience addresses the vulnerabilities that communities, cities and countries
face with the environmental consequences of climate change.
Most understandings of resilience share a
common interest in the concept of vulnerability, with a general tendency to
regard vulnerability and resilience as contrasting values. This idea is
expressed in several different ways; while some see an increase in
vulnerability as a decrease in resilience, others regard these concepts as two
sides of the same coin, still others see vulnerability as a property that needs
to be countered by resilience (Bahadur et al., 2010).
Béné, in is works, conceptualized resilience as a combination
of absorptive, adaptive and transformative capacities. This concept essentially
describes resilience as the ability to deal with shocks through ‘persistence’, ‘incremental
adjustment’ or ‘transformational responses’ and is known as the 3D Resilience
In my hotel room, still a bit cranky from being on the road and flying for almost 24 hours.
It is my first time in Asia and I will be spending the next few months in Hanoi with CIAT, studying and researching; Evidencing Climate Variability, Vulnerability and Resilience.
My trip started with a bus ride from Manchester to Heathrow Airport which lasted 6 hours and I was definitely glad and upbeat to be on my way to Hanoi.
My phone was charged, playlist set to my
favorite and I was excited to be on my way. The flight to Dubai started off
beautifully, as I settled in to the in-flight entertainment and music blasting through
Seven hours later, I was in Dubai waiting for my connecting flight to Hanoi. Three hours of waiting, so I did a little bit of window shopping and had what I thought would be my last bite of McDonald’s burger and fries for the next few months.
My excitement had dropped considerably as I was tired and stiff from the journey. The flight to Hanoi was tiring and I wished for it to end quickly. My legs were throbbing and I just wanted to be on land again. Another seven hours, and I was glad to be out of the airplane. The immigration and visa process at the Noi Bai International Airport could not have gone any smoother. I was welcomed to another culture and language and I certainly look forward to learning a few words of Vietnamese in my short stay here.
I got my first taste of climate diversity immediately I stepped out of the airport. I had read that the weather in Hanoi is Tropical, I just didn’t think of how much it would remind me of some parts of home (Nigeria). The temperature was in full blast at 34 degrees celsius and it was so different from what I had gotten used to in the last few months.
On the drive from the airport to my hotel room and I could see why Hanoi is referred to as an ancient city. The landscape, few cars roaming the road and lots of motor bikes.
I look forward to creating memories and learning as I progress in my journey and immerse myself in my research work and thesis.
What would happen if U.S. farmers stopped
producing animals for food and Americans went vegan? Some have called
for a move in that direction to address increasing concerns about U.S.
health, eating habits, and climate change. Researchers at USDA’s
Agricultural Research Service (ARS) and Virginia Tech recently explored
those questions and found surprising results.
Mary Beth Hall, an ARS animal scientist at the U.S. Dairy Forage
Research Center in Madison, Wisconsin, and Robin R. White, a professor
of Animal and Poultry Science at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, VA, found
that shifting land usage from food animal production to food crop
production would increase the total U.S. food supply by 23 percent.
Because much of that land is unsuitable for high value crops, most of
the additional food produced would include high-calorie crops like corn
A complete shift away from food animal production would present major
challenges to meeting America’s nutritional needs. With no meat, milk,
eggs, fish, or cheese in our diets, the U.S. population would not
receive enough of several different essential dietary nutrients from the
foods they eat, according to the study results. The findings are based
on information compiled in the USDA dietary guidelines.
Welcome to the research project blog of Uchechukwu Nnachi, as part requirement for the master’s degree on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security in NUI Galway. It has been an exciting journey leading up to this moment and I can’t wait to share my adventure with the world.
As I take on my research work in CCAFS, I’ll be sure to share every bit of progress and maybe setbacks with you. I am excited about my future and the prospects that this research work would bring.