Deserts Can Save Forests

It may take development of the deserts to save forests, say experts, who stress that desert ecology needs to be preserved and enhanced. “When the time comes that we have to let our forests...

Local financial lapses beset solar scheme for energy-poor Indians

A tribal song plays quietly on a cell phone plugged into an inverter drawing power from a solar battery on a mud platform under the thatch of Champa Lohar’s hut in Kotpit village. In...

Indian villagers reap rewards of restoring common land

Heading to the farmers’ fair on the outskirts of Angul, an industrial town in India’s eastern state of Odisha, there’s not a cow to be seen along the roadside. The 52-year-old headman of the...

Traditional Farming Holds All the Aces

KORAPUT, India, Feb 1 2013 (IPS) – Last monsoon season, 65-year-old Sunadhar Ramaparia, a member of the Bhumia tribe in the eastern Indian state of Odisha, mixed indigenous crops like ‘para’ paddy, foxtail millet and...

India Strives to Become ‘Drought Proof’

HYDERABAD, India, Mar 12 2013 (IPS) – In a country of 1.2 billion people, the threat of drought takes on epic proportions. Over a period of two centuries (between 1801 and 2002), India experienced 42...

Tribal Farmers Fall Back on Ancient Wisdom

While tens of thousands of Indian farmers succumb to the pressures of debt, hunger and poverty by taking their own lives, members of the Bhumia tribe are simply falling back on a 3,000-year-old agricultural...

INDIA: Climate Change Fuels Rural Out-Migration, Rising Farm Debt

BHUBANESWAR, India, Nov 30 2009 (IPS) – Under a shed made of bamboo and corrugated sheet metal, Purusottam Sur feeds his two bullocks and a cow with a bundle each of dry paddy plant. A...

INDIA: ‘Seed-Mothers’ Confront Climate Insecurity

BHUBANESWAR, India, Jul 1 2011 (IPS) – In eastern Orissa state’s tribal hinterlands about 200 ‘seed-mothers’ are on mission mode – identifying, collecting and conserving traditional seed varieties and motivating farming families to use them....

Tribal Farming Beats Climate Change

RAYAGADA, India, Apr 27 2012 (IPS) – Tribal farmer Harish Saraka has rediscovered the key to sustainable farming in this rain-dependent hinterland of eastern Odisha state – mixed cropping. Saraka, 38, is careful not to...

Climate Change Threatens the Poor in Cities

BANGKOK, Mar 27 2012 (IPS) – India, like other Asian countries, has focused its climate change adaptation strategies on rural and urban areas while neglecting the urban fringes, say experts. Peri-urban areas are characterised by...