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Climate Smart Agro-Ecology in North Sikkim - WWF

In partnership with WWF-India Khangchendzonga Landscape programme, Darjeeling Prerna is working with farmers in North Sikkim to develop a climate smart agro-ecology model within the various microclimates of Lachen and Lachung at 2700 metres and above. This area is the Upper Catchment of the Teesta River Basin and is a vast network of interconnected glacial, lakes and river systems. Rivers originating from here flow downstream into the Lachen and Lachung valleys, meeting further south in Chungthang to form the Teesta. North Sikkim district is called the hydrological estate of Sikkim state as it holds a pivotal position in controlling the water regime in the entire Teesta basin (MoEF, 2007).

Using a broad-based adaptation intervention logic, a vulnerability assessment identified agro-ecology as a key issue. Working with progressive farmers, we are conducting community capacity enhancement on various aspects of climate smart agriculture, as well as documentation and research on climate change action. Relying on broad principles of agro-biodiversity, and soil and water conservation, and providing technical inputs on climate-smart agricultural practices, progressive farmers are being supported to experiment with replacement and alternative crops as part of climate smart agriculture..

By recognising that these farmers have lived experience of climate change at a micro-local level, we can integrate the learning with broader discourses.

We are working with the farmers and our colleagues at WWF to develop and publish farmer resource and training manuals, available in all local languages to support more farmers to adopt climate smart practices. The progressive farmers are serving as examples within the community, and their farms also serve as teaching and research sites.

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