Ankara, Türkiye – On the occasion of the Word Day to Combat Desertification, His Excellency Mahdi Mohammed Gulaid, Deputy Prime Minister of Somalia, congratulated the three laureates of the 2019 Land for Life Award.
First prize: MERET project of the Ministry of Agriculture of Ethiopia, created to respond to food crises in the 1970s. Since then, it has enabled the restoration of more than 2.5 million hectares of degraded watersheds in more than 72 districts, reducing food shortages by 50 per cent and lifting millions of people out of poverty.
Second prize: Mr. Mathieu Ouedraogo from Burkina Faso, for his lifelong commitment in land restoration, developing and promoting contour stone bunds – a simple water harvesting technique combined with zaï planting, which proved very efficient in empowering farmers of the Sahel region.
2019 Land for Life China Award: Mr. Yun Da, incumbent head of the Department of Finance of Tibet Autonomous Region, for playing an active role in overcoming technological challenges to plant trees in the high-altitude Nagqu area of Tibet, alleviating poverty through ecological compensation by creating close to 300 000 foresting-related jobs.