Between 2000 and 2010, 2.2 million hectares have been degraded. Forests, savannas and humid zones have been converted into agricultural and urban zones and land productivity and crop yields strongly decreased in agricultural land. Poverty, unemployment, increased living costs, and dwindling resources increasingly drive the Beninese to migrate. An estimated 4.4 million, more than 40%, of Beninese live abroad.
Most Beninese emigrants move to West African countries, particularly Nigeria and Cote d’Ivoire. To reverse this negative trend and provide a sound response to instability and migration, the proposed project aims to create land-based green jobs by restoring and increasing land productivity in agricultural lands as well as to strengthen ecosystems and populations resilience to climate change.
The Government of Benin aims at restoring 100 000 ha and creating over 50 000 green jobs. They have chosen the departments of Alibori, Borgou and The Collines to develop a 3S project to scale up sustainable land management practices and climate-smart agriculture activities. These actions build on sound experiences such as the Greenbelt Plantation Project implemented in Alibori department supported by the Korean Cooperation (KFS), and the Soils Protection and Rehabilitation project to improve food security (ProSOL) lead by GIZ in The Collines department.
By restoring and sustainably management agricultural lands, the project will help developing sound diversified value chains, generating sustainable incomes and improving livelihoods. The new jobs will be created for unemployed young people, women and returned migrants.