Climate Resilient Agriculture

Climate Resilient Agriculture

As the greenest country on Earth, Suriname has long protected its forest resources through sound conservation management. Economic planning that takes into account sustainable development and the importance of the environment as a cross-cutting theme across all sectors has always been a challenge. Critical decisions in balancing conservation priorities against economic developments are key to revitalizing Suriname’s economy. The Government’s economic strategy leverages the country’s natural assets. 
Suriname’s emerging Sustainable Development Strategy aligns national development with international opportunities emerging around ecosystem services, renewable energy, climate change, and biodiversity. The successful transformation of Suriname’s economy along such a path will catalyze similar actions globally especially in countries endowed with intact tropical forest.
Suriname’s status as a high forest low deforestation (HFLD) country, its immense freshwater resources (accounting for some of the greatest water availability per unit of area, and per capita globally - FAO 2006; Mulligan 2012), its high biodiversity, rich tropical ecosystems, and low population density place the country in a truly unique position to become a global model for sustainable development and to take advantage of emerging ecosystem service markets.

Our Approach

CI Suriname’s approach is threefold:
1) We support the design and implementation of Suriname’s Sustainable Development Strategy, therefore we:
a). complete targeted sector analysis to identify new opportunities for green development
b). initiate analysis of the value of biodiversity and ecosystem services
c). build support for incorporating “Natural Capital” into national accounting
d). support land use planning
e). identify opportunities to increase sustainable economic development on existing degraded or unused agricultural lands in the coastal area
f). promote eco/cultural tourism development and help to develop “best practices” in mining and oil and overall private sector to “green” their operations.

2) We conserve major tracts of pristine tropical wilderness and ecosystem services; setting the stage for Suriname to take advantage of the emerging opportunities to capitalize on the value of its ecosystem services for the well-being of the nation and the world.
3) We create political and public will, which will support the long term conservation and green development of the country.

We have been able to create a number of opportunities for Suriname to move forward on a sustainable path –including analysis of global freshwater markets and potential for organic agriculture and increased yield on existing agricultural.
The aim of this project is to make Suriname’s rural communities and small scale farming activities less vulnerable to climate and environmental changes by further developing awareness and capacity-building for climate resilient agriculture in Suriname. Organic agriculture and agroforestry are important factors in order to achieve this. It has been examined that these agricultural systems have potential to significantly contribute to long-term food security. 

Climate Resilient Agriculture is based on the concept and practices of sustainable agriculture. It represents an effort to incorporate in our work the new challenges posed by climate change and its impacts on poor people’s lives. It is based on the identification of the major risks and challenges local communities face, and/or are likely to face in the near future, and on the design and implementation of site-specific adaptation strategies aimed at reducing vulnerabilities and increasing the resilience of the smallholder production systems.

Suriname has enough land for everyone but is now challenged with the development of a sustainable climate resilient model for small scale farmers in rural communities and the interior. Resilient agricultural farming activities includes the following purposes;
-food security through availability; enough appropriate quality food for everyone,
-access; barriers of acquiring food,
-stability; consistent supply of food and
-utilization; food is sufficiently nutritious and produced in this way.


Agriculture is relying on our ecosystem services: water supply, soil fertility and nutrient cycle, pollination, genetic resources, climate, pest and disease control. However, the use of fertilizers and pesticides for agriculture has a negative effect on the soil and the environment and therefore, the health of people. Only 0.01% of the agricultural area in Suriname are currently organic farms, but there are actually great potentials for organic agriculture and increased yield on existing plots through agroforestry systems.
Some initiatives have already arose in Suriname and sustainable agriculture is established by people from the interior who are living from traditional shifting cultivation. 

Project goals 
The aim of this project is to make Suriname’s rural communities and small scale farming activities less vulnerable to climate and environmental changes by further developing awareness and capacity-building for climate resilient agriculture.
In fact, organic agriculture and agroforestry systems answer to the Millennium Development Goals established by the UNDP in terms of sustainable food security, poverty alleviation, education of women and environmental sustainability in Suriname.

CI Suriname will:

  • Identify urgent areas that have potential for sustainable farming activities through metrics and monitoring systems that track the performance of food production systems;
  • Identify challenges and opportunities for development of climate resilient agriculture for small-scale farmers  to create awareness and increase capacity building;
  • Build partnership and mobilize relevant stakeholders such as small scale farmers, government, civil society and private sector  through workshops  to exchange knowledge and best practices;
  • Create decision-support tools that provide policy and decision makers with practical scientific information to shape food security policies and investment strategy. 

The main outcome is the adaptation and mitigation of the effect of climate change by improving the agricultural plots system, according to the concept and practices of sustainable agriculture:

  • Improving use of existing lands by increasing productivity and diversify land use;
  • Investing in higher value crops  through a set of agricultural best practices;
  • Reducing environmental harms and practices by reducing pollution from the use of fertilizers and avoiding pesticides;
  • Conserving ecosystem goods and services by increasing ecosystems benefits to people.





Our projects