The WWF Nedbank Green Trust has launched a new project to contribute strategically to the creation of agro-ecological and water stewardship incentives for emerging farmers downstream of the Mpumalanga Drakensberg water source area and within the greater Kruger National Park integrated land system. The project focuses on:
- Improving farming outputs by conducting a land capability assessment to identify appropriate crops and practices.
- Providing emerging farmers with access to new technologies (including appropriate irrigation infrastructure), and skills development opportunities to improve irrigation management competence.
- Facilitating the improvement of the productivity, water efficiency and profitability of smallholder farmers by developing the value chain, linking smallholder farmers to new markets and helping to align both public and private sector interests.
- Developing a proof of concept for methods and technologies that can be applied to other smallholder irrigation schemes, as well as land redistribution projects that could improve the trickling down of benefits from improved water resources management to previously disadvantaged communities.
- Developing freshwater, which aim constitutes a central pillar of the updated Kruger National Park outward-looking management strategy, which is to be more inclusive of surrounding communities.
- Ensuring that water allocations continue to flow towards the lower reaches of the Sabie catchment for use by downstream farmers and other consumers.