The International Rescue Committee (IRC), Circular Bioeconomy Alliance (CBA), and luxury products group LVMH have joined forces to combat climate change in Central Africa and promote sustainable cotton farming.
The International Rescue Committee (IRC), in collaboration with the Circular Bioeconomy Alliance (CBA), founded by King Charles III, and luxury fashion brand LVMH, have partnered to address the effects of climate change on the Lake Chad basin in Central Africa.
The partnership aims to promote supportable cotton farming, which is an important source of income for local communities in Chad, and to restore the biodiversity of the degraded land around the lake. As 80% of Chadians work in the agricultural sector and cotton is a significant cash crop for the region, the four-year program will support supportable cotton farming in the Logone Occidental and Lac provinces.
David Miliband, the president, and CEO of IRC, expressed his delight in working with CBA, LVMH, and other partners to restore biodiversity, heal degraded soil, and enhance local livelihoods through sustainable and resilient farming solutions in Chad.
500k Trees to Regenerate Ecosystem & Support Agriculture in Central Africa
The partnership will plant over 500,000 indigenous trees across 4,800 hectares of land surrounding Lake Chad to regenerate the region’s ecosystem. The program will also facilitate market access and support other agricultural value chains such as timber and fruit farming through local farmers’ associations.
Ali Amadou, the IRC Chad Deputy Director of Programs, emphasized the potential of sustainable cotton farming in mitigating the impact of climate change on the region’s land use.
Ali Amadou stated that by implementing sustainable farming practices in the Logone Occidental and Lac provinces, local communities can reduce water consumption, prevent soil degradation, and protect fragile ecosystems in the region.
CBA Chair, Marc Palahí, emphasized that the program is significant to the Alliance because it showcases how the need to decarbonize economic sectors, such as the fashion industry, can act as a catalyst to restore degraded landscapes.
Hélène Valade, LVMH’s Environmental Development Director, reiterated the company’s commitment to prioritizing the protection of biodiversity and combating climate change by implementing regenerative agriculture practices in all its strategic supply chains, thereby becoming an exemplary agent of change.
Several organizations will collaborate in executing the program:
- Pretaterra, known as the world’s largest agroforestry intelligence hub, is one of the partnering organizations in the program.
- Another organization involved in the partnership is Reforest’Action, which focuses on preserving, restoring, and expanding forests on a global scale.
- Also joining the partnership is Olam International, an agribusiness company involved in various aspects of the agricultural value chain.
- CotontChad SIV is another partner in the initiative and is jointly owned by Olam International and the Government of Chad.
- RAPS Mandoul, which is situated in Chad’s Logone province and specializes in agroforestry, is also a partner in this initiative.
The IRC, CBA, and LVMH, in collaboration with their partner organizations, aim to promote the restoration of the degraded land around Lake Chad and facilitate the development of resilient and sustainable communities in Central Africa through this partnership.