Women claim back the Tana Delta
When governments assign areas for development purposes such as mining or large-scale agricultural production, often women are affected most. Women are often responsible for their family's food security, relying on access to natural resources such as land and water. At the same time, women have little or no access to decision-making procedures. By empowering women in the Kenyan Tana Delta, Both ENDS' partner Nature Kenya has effectively build counterpower and convinced local and national decision makers of the necessity to include women in land use planning.
Development in the Tana Delta
The Tana Delta is characterised by a unique biodiversity where about 100.000 farmers, fishers, and nomads live and work. The natural resources such as land and water are crucial for their sustainable livelihoods. Since 2007, the Kenyan government has been issuing permits to local and foreign investors to use the Tana Delta land to grow commercial biofuel crops such as sugar cane and Jatropha curcas.
Both ENDS supported Nature Kenya in mounting an advocacy campaign to promote conservation and traditional livelihoods in the Delta. Nature Kenya visited individual households in the area to inform them about the impacts of the proposed large scale commercial developments on their current land use and to collect community views on the land use plan.
Women's voices are not heard in Land Use Planning
During these visits, Nature Kenya noticed that women had almost no access to any of the decision-making procedures in the delta.
In many parts of rural Kenya women form the backbone of household food security. Women deal with land tenure and activities such as the provision of water, growing vegetables and herbs, and farming activities, on a daily basis. At the same time, they have limited access to information about their land user rights and impacts of land use changes. Together with their limited participation in governance procedures, this makes women very vulnerable to the impacts of environmental degradation and land grabbing.
Engaging Women in the Delta
In order to include women's voices in the land use planning process, Nature Kenya focussed on women in community meetings, requiring local leaders to include at least 30 percent women in all meetings. This progress ensured that women's needs were at the centre of the land use plan. In addition, women groups were targeted in the implementation of pilot livelihood activities such as beekeeping, kitchen gardening, and poultry farming to increase their confidence and their income.
So, information provision and capacity building towards women was combined with the creation of political space for women to articulate and materialize their claims to land and user rights of resources in the relevant decision-making processes. This way, women will be a strong counterpower, making sure that development plans not only benefit the lucky few but also the most vulnerable groups in Kenya.
The result: a land use plan with broad support
In 2011 Nature Kenya successfully lobbied for the government to coordinate in the preparation of the Tana Delta Land Use Plan (2015) to make sure the interests of all affected stakeholders are taken into account. As a result, the land use plan is a negotiated document that is endorsed by national and county governments, and local communities.
The land use plan contains agreements about the use of water, which areas are assigned for private development and which are for local use. And: a large part of the delta will stay untouched, creating a home for many threatened bird species.
12 September 2016: The Strength of Counterpower
Nature Kenya, 31 October 2014: Where land, sea and river meet – the Tana River Delta
Read more about this subject
News / 10 February 2020
Civil society organisations from around the world condemn the statements by representatives of palm oil companies during a meeting with the Malaysian government. In this meeting, the company representatives called critical NGOs "toxic entities" and asked the Malaysian government to not let these NGOs into the country. Both ENDS' partners have published a reaction in which they defend their right "to expose the realities we face in their communities about the impacts of the palm oil sector".
News / 10 February 2020
Over 70 organisations worldwide have signed an open letter to call upon the Dutch government to vote against CETA - the 'Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement'between Canada and the EU this week. They have serious concerns about the negative global social and environmental impacts of the CETA trade deal and similar upcoming European Union's trade agreements.
Press release / 3 February 2020
Amsterdam, 3 February 2020 - A step forward, but oil and gas remain a blind spot in Dutch pension fund ABP's new investment policy published today. That's what environmental organisations Both ENDS, Fossielvrij NL, Greenpeace Netherlands and urgewald say in response to the new climate policy of the EU's largest pension fund, with assets over 442 billion euros. Although ABP is taking first steps to invest sustainably, more is needed to stop the climate crisis.
News / 2 February 2020
The world has to stop using fossil fuels, but investment in the sector continues unabated. Investors of all kinds, including banks, insurance companies and pension funds, are hesitant about making the change to sustainable energy and are not sure where to start. In the autumn of 2019, together with the DivestInvest Network and Sustainable Energy (Denmark), Both ENDS published a report entitled ‘Managed Decline of Fossil Fuel Businesses’. The report describes five criteria to test whether companies in the fossil sector are actively taking steps to wind down their fossil activities. The criteria are helping investors to choose investments that are in line with the Paris goal of restricting global warming to a maximum of 1.5 degrees Celsius. We spoke to Lars Jensen, Senior Analyst at Sustainable Energy and lead author of the report.
Blog / 21 January 2020By Michael Rice
Photo Blog - Like many communities in Indonesia, life in Semanga Village, West Kalimantan, revolves around a river. The 90 or so houses follow the curving bank of the Sambas River, each with a path down to a small pontoon where fishing traps and baskets are stacked and boats are tied.
News / 24 December 2019
We have already defined our own Green New Years resolutions!
Publication / 23 December 2019
News / 16 December 2019
Earlier this month, the seven men found guilty of the murder of Berta Cáceres were sentenced to jail for periods between 30 and 50 years. The court confirmed its opinion that Berta Cáceres was murdered for her role in defending the rights of the indigenous Lenca communities.
News / 9 December 2019
At the end of November, the organisations WALHI South Sulawesi (part of Friends of the Earth) and Both ENDS filed a formal complaint with the Dutch export credit agency Atradius DSB. Despite the warnings from local communities for the negative consequences of a land reclamation project in the bay of Makassar, Atradius DSB advised the Dutch government to provide dredging company Boskalis with insurance for the execution of the project. The consequences for the fish stock, the beach and the lives of thousands of small-scale fishermen and their families are severe. Atradius DSB has not sufficiently investigated these harmful consequences beforehand.
Event / 4 December 2019, 15:00 - 16:30
On Wednesday December 4th 2019 Both ENDS together with Heinrich Böll Stiftung from he US organises a side event at the UNFCCC COP in Madrid: Can the GCF Catalyze Inclusive, Gender-Responsive Local Climate Action Globally and in Latin America?
News / 26 November 2019
No fewer than 55 NGO's, foundations and associations, many of whom do not normally deal primarily with climate change, express their concern about the dangers of climate change for everyone and everything in the statement 'The climate belongs to everyone'.
They call for urgent action and support the international Climate Strike taking place this Friday, November 29. In cities all over the world, young and old will take to the streets again. In the Netherlands too, climate strikes will be organised in many cities.
News / 18 November 2019
Good news for the climate: last week, the European Investment Bank (EIB) decided to stop investing in fossil fuels by 2021. This is part of its new energy strategy.
Press release / 18 November 2019
The Netherlands provides export credit insurances and guarantees worth 1.5 billion euros annually to Dutch companies active in the oil and gas sector abroad. This support amounts to one and a half times the annual amount that the Cabinet of Prime Minister Rutte mobilises for climate initiatives worldwide. The intended effects of Dutch international climate policy are more than offset by this fossil export support. That is the conclusion of a new report from Both ENDS which is published today.
Publication / 17 November 2019
Publication / 8 November 2019
Publication / 8 November 2019
Video / 8 November 2019
The Athi River Community Network is made up of communities who live along the Athi River watershed. Members of the Athi River Community Network promised to join forces with the Friends of Ondiri Wetland to ensure that this critical wetland is restored and conserved for the sake of current and future generations.
News / 8 November 2019
On Thursday November 7th, a group of European NGO's including Both ENDS, sent a letter to Vice-President of the EU Frans Timmermans, in which they ask him to support the phase out of European Investment Bank’s fossil fuel financing by the end of 2020.
News / 5 November 2019
After a complaint filed by women's groups from Ixquisis, Guatemala, the Interamerican Development Bank (IDB) has started an investigation on several policy violations, amongst which the Gender Equality policy. This is a unique chance to create a precedent, because complaints on the IDB's gender policy are very rare. The women from Ixquisis are fighting for their rights with support of the Global Alliance for Green and Gender Action (GAGGA).
News / 31 October 2019
Earlier this month, we learned that Golfrid Siregar, an Indonesian environmental lawyer working for our partner organisation WALHI died under suspicious circumstances. We call for a thorough and transparent investigation and have brought the case to the attention of the Indonesian embassy in The Hague and to the Netherlands' embassy in Jakarta.