Barking the wrong tree in emerging economies

Please read the article below then proceed to the test question on assessing your knowledge of environment management, climatic change and nature of emerging economies:

"British-based risk consultancy Maplecroft lists Haiti as number two of 166 nations by their vulnerability to climate change, behind only Somalia and ahead of Afghanistan and Sierra Leone. "What stands out most for Haiti is resource security -- food security and water security," Fiona Place, risk analyst at Maplecroft, told the Reuters news agency of the ranking that rates countries according to their vulnerability to natural hazards, from droughts to floods. Long-term efforts to help Haiti recover from the earthquake will have to reverse environmental damage such as near-total deforestation that threatens food and water supplies for the Caribbean nation, experts say. The nation has less than 2 percent forest cover – which contributes to erosion that undermines food output. A global project to plant trees worldwide, for instance, has largely bypassed Haiti. A U.N.-backed campaign registers 7.8 billion planted trees -- more than one for every person on the planet. But it lists just 140,000 in Haiti which has a population of 10 million" (excerpt from dated Jan 29, 2010).

QUESTION: How do you increase the number of trees in Haiti?
Choose the most appropriate response from one of the following:

a) Call in horticulture and agriculture experts, survey the soil quality and then recommend the best way for the trees to be planted;

b) Transport the right kind of soil to Haiti farmlands so that the trees will grow quickly

c) Provide capacity building to officials in Haiti's Ministry of Environment

d) Get the Development Partners to agree to send food to the Haiti population for 3 years while working with Ministry of Agriculture to plant and grow high yield crops

e) Government to provide fuel supplies at an affordable price for Haiti’s households

f) None of the above

The most appropriate answer should be (e). A similar situation occurs in East Timor where the households chop down trees for cooking and lighting purposes. The immediate action is for the Haiti government to provide fuel supplies at affordable cost. it can also consider borrowing from IFIs and invest in Food Security Projects and Combatting Climate Change Projects wisely, that is effectively, and ensure at all times that funds are not squandered, otherwise we are barking up the wrong tree.


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