South African land and water reform processes, as well as the interaction between water, agriculture and climate change in the EU, were the subjects of a workshop in Pretoria, South Africa, in which Christiane Gerstetter, Sandra Naumann and Nicole Kranz participated as representatives of Ecologic Institute. The workshop was organised by the Water Governance Group of the South African Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). Ecologic Institute’s presentations are available for download.
The battle against poverty in many developing countries is closely linked to the distribution of land to the poor, rural population through land reform. This is also the case for South Africa; there, land reform begun after the end of the apartheid regime seeks to revoke past compulsory acquisitions and to improve the standing of those discriminated against during the apartheid. Experiences with land reform so far, however, have shown that land distribution alone is not sufficient. Rather, recipients must be capable of using their land in an agriculturally effective way. To this end, not only does agricultural know-how play an important role but also the assignment of water rights. Integrated water and land management is therefore necessary in order to improve the socio-economic conditions of the rural population. In contrast, the intersection of water and land management in the EU is mostly relevant from an ecological point of view. The beginnings of such policies can be found, for instance, in the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) of the EU.
These and other aspects of integrated water and land management were discussed during the workshop. Another part of the workshop was a two-day trip for the workshop participants to the South African province of Limpopo. In so doing, the representatives of Ecologic Institute gained insights into the progress and problems of land reform implementation in South Africa and had the opportunity to speak with local stakeholders.
The workshop took place as part of a project funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research and the South African National Research Foundation designed to encourage research collaboration between Germany and South Africa.
The presentations by Christiane Gerstetter and Sandra Naumann are available for download:
- Ecologic Instiute Presentation: Land tenure and land reform in the EU [pdf, 65 KB, English] - Christiane Gerstetter
- Ecologic Institute Presentation: Land management and climate change from a European perspective [pdf, 381 KB, English] - Sandra Naumann
- Ecologic Institute Project: Integrated Water and Land Management at the Regional SADC and EU Level
- Ecologic Institute Project: Analysis of the South African Renewables Initiative (SARi)
- Ecologic Institute Project: Land polices and development - study for the European Parliament