Sustainable Livelihoods

Defending the Commons and the Right to Land, Water and Food

Effective agrarian reform, according to the Global Campaign for Agrarian Reform (GCAR) includes “ a bundle of policies that ensure that agricultural land is distributed to landless peasants and smallholders swiftly and equitably.” Such redistribution is necessary to combat growing hunger and landlessness worldwide. In fact, nearly one billion people around the world are now suffering from hunger and malnutrition – about half of which live in smallholder farming households.  This crisis of world hunger is set to deepen as livelihood resources such as land and water continue to be transferred from such groups to the financially powerful in ever larger areas and longer timeframes.

Small farms, big results

For three decades the UN’s World Food Day on Oct. 16 has offered a ready-made opportunity to tackle hunger’s causes and solutions. Unfortunately, the conversation often focuses narrowly on ways to increase the food supply with purchased technologies originating far from farmers’ fields.

Free – but not for you and me: Winners and Losers in proposed Free Trade Agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama

With the political extravaganza of the debt ceiling debate now in their rear view mirror, the U.S. Congress will soon vote on “free” trade agreements with Panama, Colombia and South Korea. Despite major concerns raised by legislators and advocacy groups in the US (and in those countries), the majority in the US Congress are expected to approve the three agreements as a means to strengthen a debilitated US economy.

Seeing REDD

Like most other market-based solutions, REDD (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation), and its more recent avatar REDD +, are fundamentally about profit – not forests, not people, and not global warming or the climate.

Youth carry the work forward

From her humble beginnings, Sayra never imagined the profound impact she would have on the global movement for food sovereignty.

Cooling and feeding the planet with agroecology

In order to fix the broken food system, we need to de-colonize our minds. What do I mean about "de-colonize"? To understand that, do this short exercise. What comes to your mind, when you hear the word “Agriculture?” Is it a tree, a head of lettuce or vast endless fields somewhere in the US Midwest? 

If the first thing came to your mind was a vast field of a single crop (such as endless rows of corn), you are certainly not alone. For decades, both consumers and farmers have been educated to think of agriculture as an industry of monocrops. The end of small, integrated farm plots (i.e. real food) coincided with the advent of industrial agriculture and the launch of the “Green Revolution.” 

Challenging Mega-Dams through the People’s Permanent Tribunal

The La Parota mega-dam being constructed in Guerrero, Mexico will displace over 5,000 families and have an indirect impact on an additional 15,000 lives.  That is unless the Assembly of Environmentally Impacted Communities (ANAA) has a say in the matter.

Along with the Council of Communal Land Owners and Communities Against Construction of La Parota Dam (CECOP) and, another Grassroots grantee, the Mexican Movement of People Affected by Dams (MAPDER), ANAA has advocated that the state and federal government withdraw its plans to build the dam.

Up Against the Wall: Beehives of Resistance and Self-Determination

Eight years ago this month, the International Court of Justice ruled in an advisory opinion that “the construction of the wall, and its associated régime, are contrary to international law.” While neither the state of Israel nor the corporations like Elbit Systems Ltd., which profit from the wall, have heeded the advice of this ruling, Palestinian communities’ resistance continues to grow in both scale and creativity.

Update from farmers in Japan

 Below is an update from Grassroots International’s partner, the Via Campesina, concerning the situation of farmers in Japan. To keep up to date with the Nouminren blog, visit http://earlybirds.ddo.jp/earlybirds/saigai/?lang=en.

 
 News from Nouminren, La Via Campesina member in Japan
 
“I do not think that I can farm this year, but with the members of local NOUMINREN, we will take one step after another to make a come back of our agriculture in our village!