In November 2018, ENRCSOs with funding support from the Inclusive Green Growth for Poverty Reduction (IGG4PR) Project, funded by UNDP and the Ministry of Water and Environment, undertook a capacity needs assessment leading to development of a capacity building plan aligned to green growth development in the country. The Capacity Needs Assessment identified among other concerns, the lack of capacity to engage private sector to appropriately respond to demands of green growth as well as the lack of capacity to engage the private sector to undertake requisite research and innovations based on the green growth path.
In August 2019, the ENRCSO Network, in response to the issues raised in the needs assessment particularly, the capacity gaps on advocacy and lobbying, developed ENRCSOs Advocacy and Lobbying Strategy for Green Growth. It focuses on the five (05) priority areas of the Uganda Green Growth Development Strategy that include agriculture, infrastructure, natural capital management, energy and planned cities. As part of the action plans in the Strategy, the ENR CSOs now seek to establish an engagement platform for Private Sector and adjacent farming communities based on agro-commodity investments with a focus on tobacco and sugarcane. The platform will serve as a mechanism for creating awareness and engaging commercial/contractual farmers of tobacco and sugarcane, as well as owners of the main estates of tobacco and sugarcane, and prepare them for green approaches on their agricultural establishments. Green approaches entail but are not limited to sound, responsible and sustainable practices that are mindful of the carbon and water footprints on the social, economic and environmental front. They also entail compliance with international best practices, national and international laws governing environment and natural resources at local government level. 3. The planned activity two meetings are planned. The first meeting will bring together commercial/licensed and/or out-growers of tobacco and the lead tobacco processing entity, Africa One International (AOI), in the presence of district local government officials. These will convene at an agreed venue in Gulu on Thursday 17th October 2019. The second meeting will bring together commercial/licensed and/or out-growers of sugarcane and the lead Sugarcane growing entity, Kinyara Sugar Works together, in the presence of district local government representatives. These will convene at a venue in Masindi on Friday 18th October 2019.
The meetings are intended to:
- Remind commercial growers of tobacco and sugarcane of the need for compliance to environment and natural resources laws governing sustainable production, observance of international best practices and expose them to new approaches for responsible management.
- Create awareness about sustainable approaches as Uganda moves from brown to green tendencies as the country pursues the green growth path.
- Establish a platform for future engagement on partnerships for sustainable management of natural resources, green jobs, ecosystem services, chemicals and waste management in tobacco and sugarcane investments.