Skip to main content

This content is exclusively provided by FAO / FAOLEX / ECOLEX

In order to combat the desertification in Egypt, the Ministry of Agriculture and Land Reclamation together with the Desert Research Center have drafted this sectoral National Action Program (NAP), to be implemented in 5 years, as specified presenting the single projects. The NAP was prepared in accordance with the UNCCD directives.
Considering the specificity of the Egyptian territory, four main agro-ecological zones with specific attributes have been individuated to formulate a non-unified programme, as follows: the Nile Valley; the North Coastal Zone; the Inland and the Eastern Desert; and the western Desert. In the NAP it has always been taken into consideration the importance of cross-cutting issues in formulating the projects, such as their environmental and economic sustainability and their social and gender equity, to ensure their positive impact. After analyzing causes, processes and natural and social impacts of desertification and a review of some of the previous and ongoing activities to combat the desertification in each of the agro-ecological zones, the NAP presents 5 intervention programs associated with a number of projects, including: (i) Thematic Programme; (ii) Irrigated Agriculture; (iii) Rehabilitation of Rangeland; (iv) Rain fed agriculture; and (v) Sand dune stabilization. Each project describes the background, its objectives, a work plan, the proposed duration and the estimated budget.
In order to eliminate hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition, the Program proposes the following projects: Safe use of treated sewage water for afforestation, considering the sustainable use of land and water resources directly linked to food security and economic and social benefits; Soil Erosion Control for maximizing rain fed agriculture role in food production.
To make agriculture and forestry more productive and sustainable, the Nap includes in its projects the following goals: (i) modernization of Egyptian Agriculture in the Nile Valley and Delta through increasing the agricultural productivity per unit water and land upon efficient use of these resources, cultivating high yield varieties and reducing the unit cost of production; (ii) increase of the agricultural production and farm income by improving the irrigation infrastructure, facilitating a more equitable distribution of water; (iii) improvement of the long-term sustainability of irrigation; (iv) identification of the pollution due to reused agricultural drainage water to achieve appropriate soil, water and crop management to mitigate its adverse environmental impacts; (v) achievement of a realistic rangelands management maximizing their sustainable production by maintaining a long term productivity (use within carrying capacity); (vi) re-vegetating the bare range areas (or abandoned rain fed cropland) by perennial forage species to improve the quality and quantity of forage production particularly the native forage species; (vii) development of a proper grazing management so that the basic plant and soil resources are used in such a way that they continue to be productive in a sustainable manner under the grazing system employed.
Formulation of activities of the NAP are based on adoption of the integrated approach to address the main factors of desertification involved together with the adoption of the participatory approach of the pertinent stakeholders in the different stages of execution including planning, initiation and implementation with possible financial contributions of the beneficiaries. In particular, to enable a more inclusive and efficient agricultural and food systems, the Program suggests the enhancement of the role of women and youth and their participation in the coordinated efforts and, above all, it promotes an Integrated Irrigation Management Project which aims at farmer and stakeholder participation, particularly through Water Users Associations.
Given that the whole document is designed to combat desertification, to increase the resilience of livelihoods to disasters, the NAP plans to implement the following activities: (i) develop a desertification assessment and monitoring taking into consideration 3 sets of critical indicators, they are: physical (climate, landforms, soil and water), biological (flora and fauna) and social (population dynamic, economic status and production and economic uses of the land); (ii) an experimental cloud seeding project to provide a method for water quantity support using natural phenomena; (iii) implement an effective erosion control systems; (iv) a Programme for sand dunes stabilization.
In the context of governance, the Nap encourages: (i) institutional development in the Ministries having activities or participate in the various fields involved in the Programme, (ii) broaden and decentralize capacity building to ensure greater involvement of the local grassroots levels, and (iii) develop qualified manpower in all fields.
Egyptian National Action Program to Combat Desertification.
Type of document:
Date of text:
Data source: