The Ugandan National Oil Palm Project (NOPP) aims to improve rural development in and around Lake Victoria through oil palm production, and to contribute to poverty reduction. This began in Kalangala district in 2002, and oil palm now dominates much of the landscape on that island. It is now being expanded to Buvuma where land has been acquired for new plantations, and several mainland districts where this process is just beginning.
But research has shown that oil palm development can also lead to negative social and environment impacts, and large areas assigned for oil palm reduces land available for farmers to grow other crops, increases the pressure on remaining forests and wetlands, and leaves local communities with hard choices about how to meet their needs from what land remains.
In response, Ecological Trends Alliance with support of TBI developed with community members alternative land use plans in six subcounties, in areas were oil palm expansion is happened or is being considered, using fully participatory processes and inclusive decision making.
The experiences from the six subcounties, the purpose and the process and recommendations that will lead towards more sustainable land use that better reflects the needs and priorities of local communities and lessons for other districts to learn from have been summarized in a policy brief.
And a series of six infobriefs summarizes the process and results in each subcounty:
The full land use plans will be available shortly on www.ecotrendsalliance.org.