The national drought plan will come into effect in 2019

Algeria- The National Plan to fight against drought will be finalized by the end of 2018 to be implemented as early as 2019, the first head of the General Directorate of Forests (DGF), Ali Mahmoudi, said in Algiers on Wednesday.

This plan is being prepared by the Algerian expert Safar Zaitoun, appointed by the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), in partnership with the authorized national organizations and research centers, Mr. Mahmoudi told the press on the sidelines of an information meeting on this initiative launched by this UN agency. This meeting allowed to present and to put in debate the project of this national plan proposed by this consultant, to bring the necessary amendments to arrive at a reliable and functional system to face the problem of drought and to prepare for a resilience effective.

According to the Director General of the DGF, as part of this plan, which is part of the implementation of the decisions approved at the COP13 held in Ordos (China) in September 2017, the UN provides assistance to countries most affected by drought or desertification. Of the 34 countries that have been selected, 20 are from Africa, including Algeria, he said. In this regard, a call for nominations for the selection of experts has been launched by UNCDD in order to commission its experts to draw up a plan for the fight against drought specific to each country concerned by this aid plan.

During this meeting, it was explained that through this initiative of UNCDD, it is a question of helping the selected countries to strengthen the resilience to the drought by implementing concrete actions on the systems drought preparedness to build the resilience of people, communities and ecosystems. The goal is also to help countries in the form of a "toolbox" of recognized techniques from which countries could choose a better fit for their particular circumstances.

The first phase of the drought initiative will focus on helping countries develop comprehensive national drought plans. The National Drought Plan will detail the process for dealing with drought and drought related activities, such as early warning and forecasting, defining trigger reporting levels, impact assessments, recommendations of intervention and mitigation measures.

This plan will also create a national government structure to coordinate information, identify ways to prepare for drought, identify different areas affected by drought, identify drought risks, and communicate extent and magnitude of these drought conditions. In addition, in case of emergency unavoidable drought, the plan identifies ways to mitigate the effects of drought, it was explained.

In addition, Mr. Mahmoudi argued that Algeria is considering joining another UN project entitled " Great Green Wall Initiative " as part of the Green Climate Fund to finance rehabilitation. of the country's Green Dam. " The Great Green Wall is a vast FAO project against desertification that concerns all of Africa from East to West and we wish to be part of it ", he stressed. To this end, he indicated that Algeria had already applied to FAO for a number of projects under this program.

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