Review on the Realization of National Food Independency through Scaling up Soil & Water Conservation Practices, Ethiopia

Merkineh Mesene Mena


Ethiopia presents the worst example of soil degradation as a result of combined factors such as massive deforestation, lack of sustainable SWC efforts, rapidly growing population pressure, loose land use policies thus lead to the loss of civilization by erosion and flooding, the loss of arable land/fertile soils by erosion, the decline of soil fertility and low infiltration rate of rainwater due to accelerated runoff, which decreases underground water and all resulted in climate change, environmental stress and poverty. The scaling up of SWC practice means increasing soil fertility and land productivity at the end leads to household food independency. Clearly defined and socially accepted land tenure policy encourages farmers to invest on permanent SWC practices. Protected soil ecosystems with its organisms are very important for soil organic matter decomposition and nutrient cycling under natural ecosystem. Thus soil fertility maintained and productivity increases and when fertility increases, soils resistance against erosion increase. Policies and strategies can play a decisive role through SWC practices among which PASDEP is the most popular as it underlines awareness creation at individual land user and community level. Opportunities could be utilized for success of SWC practices such as recognition of the problems by the entire society, progressive new rural development policies, skilled man power, vast experience in SWC practices are notable.

Keywords: food independency, soil degradation, soil & water conservation, scaling up

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