improving the local ecosystem.
Environmental conservation is essential for human development.
Sand dams free time; enabling communities to invest in planting trees.
Trees fertilise soil and help reduce erosion.
We support communities to establish tree nurseries that enable more trees to be planted in drylands.
Tree nurseries are sustained by the water near-by sand dams provide
Many of these are rare species or have significant economic value.
Through our partners, Africa Sand Dam Foundation, we support communities with the knowledge to sustainably manage land for the benefit of people and the environment
Conservation of the environment is critical to the economic development of people living in drylands.
Sand dams are a key tool for addressing environmental degradation in drylands. By harvesting water close to people's homes thay save people time that can now be invested in sustainable land management: terracing land and planting trees to prevent erosion and keep water in the soil.
Life depends on trees. They absorb carbon dioxide, release oxygen, fertilise soil, reduce erosion and prevent land degradation. At the same time they provide fuel, food for people and animals, compost, building materials and even medicines.
In Africa, 80% of total energy use is fulfilled by trees - with electricity only contributing 6%. But, unsustainable harvesting has contributed to severe deforestation, which causes environmental degradation and desertification; destroying wildlife and habitats.
For the people living in drylands, deforestation means hunger, thirst and fuel shortages. If managed in a sustainable fashion, trees can provide long-term environmental and economic benefits.
Through our partners, the Africa Sand Dam Foundation (ASDF), we support communities to plant a variety of trees. To ensure their sustainability, ASDF train community members in how to propagate seedlings and establish tree nurseries near a sand dam for a stable water supply.
The effects of climate change and land degradation have been devastating in many areas of rural Africa. But it is possible to reverse the trend towards deforestation and desertification.
The communities supported by Excellent Development are doing just this. Since 2002 they have planted 860,487 trees.
More than a third of climatological disasters affect sub-Saharan Africa.
UNDP Africa Human Development Report, 2012.