Today in Skopje, USAID launched its new Adaptation to Climate Change in Agriculture project which will promote adaptive agricultural practices and raise awareness of the forthcoming challenges of climate change and the need for joint, community level responses.  Adaptation to Climate Change in Agriculture will be implemented by the Rural Development Network (RDN).

“Real progress to safeguard our natural resources for future generations will ultimately depend upon positive action at the community level by farmers, rural dwellers, and other local groups that have a stake in preserving their source of livelihood,” said Joseph Lessard, USAID Macedonia Economic Growth Office Director.  “I commend RDN’s grassroots development approach that takes into account the needs and priorities of people at the local level.”

The project will focus on the Mediterranean zone, including the Vardar region with parts of Strumica and Gevgelija, as this is the Macedonian region most affected by climate change.   Adaptation to Climate Change in Agriculture will target family farms that market most of their output as well as semi-subsistence farmers. The project will test and monitor techniques to find out what works best under certain conditions so that lessons learned can be replicated in more communities throughout the targeted regions, thereby helping to minimize some of the expected adverse global warming impacts on crops.