Overseas Aid

House of Lords written question – answered on 25th March 2014.

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Photo of Lord Ashcroft Lord Ashcroft Conservative

To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether United Kingdom aid has funded projects to combat climate change in South America, including a scheme to improve animal diets by cultivating trees and plants in such a way to reduce the amount of methane escaping through belching and flatulence; and, if so, how much was spent and what was the result of that project.

Photo of Baroness Verma Baroness Verma The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change

The Government supports a number of projects which combat climate change in South America. These include support for a project to encourage the uptake of Silvopastoral Systems (SPS) by Colombian farmers. By introducing SPS, the project is protecting forests, improving the livelihood of farmers, increasing biodiversity and reducing Greenhouse Gas emissions through improved land management. It does this through SPS techniques which improve the grazing land by the planting of trees, shrubs and fodder crops, installing living fences and conserving existing forest.

Participating small farmers, the majority of whom are living in conditions of rural poverty, are also able to raise more, healthier cattle on their existing land, increasing their income and reducing the need to clear forest. The resulting change in diet for the cattle that live on the farms may affect emissions from the cattle but this is not an objective of the project.

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