This customized methodology helped elicit information relating to what we didn’t know previously about our frontier challenge and our ‘deep demonstration site’. It allowed us to triangulate data gathered, and the intel generated from it supported identifying possible entry points for future experimentation related to our frontier challenge.
Possible Entry Points
From the intel generated, we found possible experimenting entry points to be mainly grounded into two thematic areas: (i) ‘Vulnerability to Sea Level Rise, Cyclones, Tsunamis and Droughts, Flooding/King Tides’ and (ii) ‘Food and Water Security’, with a stronger focus on the latter.
Given Tuvalu’s status as ‘resource poor’ and faced with extreme negative climatic conditions, an unfavorable geomorphology, and its dependence on processed and imported food items (a major contributor of non-communicable diseases) and foreign food aid, further analysis of the data and intel pointed towards agriculture-based interventions that can help support communities threatened by food scarcity.
Experiments such as hydroponic farming, high-raised bed farming systems, diversified farming systems, and urban and backyard gardening which require only relatively little financial or technological inputs seems viable and promising.
Unfortunately, any such interventions are currently halted as we repurpose our energy to respond to the unprecedented global Coronavirus or Covid-19 pandemic and its impacts in the Pacific region. With Covid-19 outbreak causing a global health crisis as well as a development and inequality crisis, food scientists and academics are already warning that food supplies around the world could be massively disrupted. As borders around the world are closed and countries succumbing to lockdowns, a drop in the production and manufacturing of food is on the horizon, the future of food security looks bleak.
At a global scale, chances are that this pandemic will increase the number of people suffering from hunger and undernourishment. Post pandemic, the world might see a ‘silent war’ fought over food supplies just like the silent war currently being fought over Personal Protective Equipment’s (PPEs) and pharmaceutical supplies.
At the regional and national levels, we ought to be prepared for such a ‘invisible disaster’ unfolding secretly, and this could be more disastrous then the ‘perfect storm’ of the 2007-2008 that sent an additional 75 million people into the ranks of the ‘world’s hungry’. Hence, a stronger movement, fighting the current pandemic with facts, science, integration, solidarity, and technical cooperation can lead to prosperity for all.
In my next blog, I will be specifically focusing on insights generated on the theme: Vulnerability to Sea Level Rise, Cyclones, Tsunamis, and Droughts, Flooding/King Tides.