The immediate outcome will be full implementation of new salt-affected management strategies within the pilot sites with related benefits to farming communities and land management organizations. The longer-term outcome will be new thinking and awareness of the gains possible from new salinity management approaches and both support and implementation of overall system reform. This, in turn, will lead to out-scaling of alter- native production packages beyond the project area through project partners including key government organizations. The successful implementation of above activities will increase the productivity of salt-affected lands, which will contribute positively to country’s economy and reducing rural poverty. The overall impact of the project will be a revitalized agriculture in Ethiopia and South Sudan.
Scaling up Pathways
The key element of this project is to pilot test innovative strategies and approaches for the rehabilitation and management of salt-affected soils and then “scale up” recommended technologies to reach up to a greater number of rural poor. As discussed before, all activities of this project will be carried out with the involvement of local rural communities. Once convinced, these communities will act as the champions of change and critical drivers in the process of scaling up. For successful scaling up, policy support and institutional infrastructure is very crucial. During the pilot stage, opportunities and constraints that may affect the scaling up process will be critically evaluated. For long-term sustainability, the overall impact of the alternative production systems on the lives of the rural poor, natural resources and environment will also be reviewed.
Socio-Economic and Environmental Impacts
Adoption of alternative crop and forage production systems will reduce the area lost to salinity degradation, bring income to farmers and improve livelihood of poor rural communities especially women. Transformation of salt-affected lands into productive lands will also contribute directly to poverty reduction by increasing the availability of fuel wood, construction materials, wild foods, and medicinal plants.