New FAO study finds ways to help countries cope with natural disasters

A new study by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has found that rainwater harvesting in Jamaica and planting Haitian peas are two of the best practices to cope with natural disasters.

The study also found that planting trees provide some form of protection for cattle in Bolivia as that country coped with natural disasters.

The FAO study analyses good practices to face natural disasters in Jamaica, Guyana, Haiti, Bolivia, Colombia, and seven other countries in the world.

The UN body noted that harvesting rainwater in Jamaica, planting trees as barriers to the hurricanes of Haiti and the use of improved pens to protect alpacas from the cold of the Bolivian altiplano, are some of the practices included in the study titled “Disaster risk reduction at farm level: Multiple benefits, no regrets”.

The study analysed more than 900 farms in 10 countries around the world and showed that on average, improved practices generated two times more benefits than previously used practices, including increases in production and a reduction in damages and losses due to disasters.

It said these solutions do not require substantial investments, making them available to small-scale farmers.

“The study not only demonstrates that prevention is profitable, but also highlights the important role that small-scale interventions at the farm level can play to increase the resilience of livelihoods and promote sustainable development,” said Anna Ricoy, the FAo coordinator of Disaster Risk Management.