Developing countries are engaged in a balancing act of rapid development to eradicate poverty and energy deprivation together with ecosystem restoration while meeting mitigation and adaptation goals determined by the Paris Agreement. Addressing climate change means moving away from conventional development pathways and adopting sustainable options. Eco Village Development (EVD) as a model to shape the agriculture and renewable energy sector could be an option that developing countries could fall back on.
The EVD model is being advocated as a viable option by the EVD project, implemented in India, Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka with CSO partners and is funded by CISU, Denmark. CANSA serves as the regional partner in the project. EVD promotes climate action by reducing GHG emission and building adaptive capacity of vulnerable communities. EVD is a basket of local solutions on renewable energy, accompanied with community mobilization, involvement of women and children and appropriate training and capacity building bringing lasting changes in communities. EVD solutions provide alternative income source and strengthens agriculture-based livelihoods.
The effectiveness of the EVD as an alternate pathway towards sustainable development of village as a unit, has been established through the demonstration villages set up in diverse socioeconomic, geographic and climatic conditions across Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka and India. The approach has been useful to communities where the local solutions were implemented resulting in augmented capacity and improved livelihood.
Sub national governments which have the mandate to implement climate policies need to integrate EVD principles and solutions into state action plan on climate change. Apart from allocation of state budget for replicating EVD, international climate finance needs to be tapped. Active involvement of private sector is essential in order to replicate EVD. Civil society organisations could be game changers in replicating EVD solutions and approaches by adapting it to the local conditions.
In order to facilitate it, a repository of local solutions having both climate mitigation and adaptation co-benefits to communities using them is being prepared. The aim of the repository is to support climate policy advocacy with documented evidence and to inspire other actors to benefit by using the solutions locally. The solutions are useful to communities of diverse socio economic and climatic realities and contribute to social development such as improving livelihood, reducing drudgery in women etc. The solutions also fit into village level development plans making it useful for planning and implementation. The repository has diverse local level techniques with the detailed technical information on installation and maintenance. It includes images and videos of the solutions being installed and used, making it easy to be followed by CSOs in their own locations. It also has contact information of the source organisation making it easy for CSOs to access support from the experts. The repository is prepared by EVD project partner INFORSE.
We seek inputs from CANSA members in order to make the repository useful for a wider range of solutions. A template could be shared with the CSOs willing to contribute to the repository. The repository looks like the example and each solution will have a dedicated webpage for it. The contributing CSOs would be duly acknowledged in the repository and all copyrights are protected. CANSA members are encouraged to send in their interests in the following categories and in the given template. For any further queries do reach out to me at the coordinates below.
By Santosh Patnaik, Program Coordinator, CANSA