IITA and partners to develop recommendations for food production efficiency
IITA will lead an initiative to develop recommendations for sustainable nitrogen management strategies to improve food and energy production within the Lake Victoria catchment. The Institute will work in collaboration with the Lake Victoria Basin Commission (LVBC) and other stakeholders, while aiming to minimize environmental pollution.
This followed a two-day workshop held in Kisumu on 5–6 March where stakeholders drawn from research organizations and institutes of higher learning met to come up with workplans for optimizing nitrogen use efficiency in the region. Scientists were drawn from IITA, Lake Victoria Basin Secretariat, the University of Nairobi, Kenyatta University, Makerere University, the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), the Tanzania Agricultural Research Institute (TARI), and representatives of Kisumu Water and Sewerage Company Ltd and Lake Victoria South Water Services Board.
INMS Scientist and stakeholders who gathered in Kisumu, Kenya to develop strategies for sustainable Nitrogen use in the Lake basin.
Under the auspices of the International Nitrogen Management Systems (INMS), affiliate institutes will carry out research within the Lake Victoria basin in line with identified gaps within the WAGES (i.e., Water quality, Air quality, Greenhouse gas balance, Ecosystem services, and Soil quality) framework to address the too little–too much nitrogen paradox in the region.
IITA-Cameroon Head of Station, Cargele Masso, who is also in charge of the INMS project, led the workshop. Masso stated that INMS will carry out in-depth research on the practices around the Lake basin to inform policy and package messages through effective channels that will reach more than 45 million people living in the Lake Victoria basin.
“We would like to address the scientific gap so that science can inform policy making in the Lake basin region for a stronger enforcement and implementation of legal and policy frameworks to operationalize efficient nitrogen management,” said Masso.
Guest of honor and LVBC Executive secretary, Dr Ally-Said Matano, pointed out the urgent need to address efficient nitrogen use due to the rapidly increasing population in the Lake Victoria basin.
“My wish as well as that of LVBC is that you come up with a clearly defined roadmap to achieving good nitrogen management for and beyond East Africa, to optimize food and energy production, while minimizing environmental pollution,” said Matano.
Scientists in the meeting resolved to work with communication specialists to not only package messages, but to align messages to the most relevant audiences—knowledge consumers. They also made similar commitments to bridge policy–science knowledge gaps in EAC Partner States.
The scientific evidence generated by the East Africa Demonstration Site of INMS will contribute to inform policy decisions by the member states for good nitrogen management.