Cesvi activities to manage natural resources and promote sustainable development.
Many under-developed countries are rich in natural resources, and as a result depend on these resources for their production activities and potential for development. At the same time, many of these countries contend with multiple environmental problems. The degradation of natural resources is often connected with other factors involved in under-development such as poverty, population growth, economic and social inequality, etc. In any case, accelerated development, unsuitable or unsustainable, in and of itself contributes to the rapid degradation of the environment and to the destruction of precious natural resources.
Environmental problems, including global ones, are above all local problems, with specific causes, effects and implications. Therefore it is necessary to base problem solving on an understanding of local problems (environmental, social and economic), the involvement of local actors, an understanding of local customs, the strengthening of human resources, the development of technical capacities, and economic sustainability.
For several years Cesvi has supported initiatives concerning the management of natural resources in various countries around the world and in partnership with local, governmental, and nongovernmental institutions. Cesvi's environmental projects involve various measures depending on the case:
Research Activities: To deepen understanding, whether scientific or traditional, of local environmental resources and their territorial, social, cultural and economic contexts. These activities are necessary when searching for sustainable solutions to environmental problems that are long lasting and technically and socially suitable.
Training Activities: To develop human resources and reinforce local institutions that can be charged with sustainable management of natural resources, and to raise awareness and involve various local social actors.
Environmental activities: To promote the participation of local social groups in the decision-making process regarding natural resources. It is necessary to promote, whenever possible, management systems suitable to the local context, accepted by the local actors and sustainable with natural resources.
Small-Scale Economic Development: To identify and promote economic development activities that are sustainable and allow for diversification of revenue sources for the local population, ensuring less dependence on over-exploited natural resources.
Development of Infrastructure: To provide rural infrastructures (wells, hygienic services, schools, etc.) on the basis of the primary needs of the poorest social groups located in the area of intervention.
Cesvi's environmental projects can be classified in two typologies:
1. sustainable development and management of environmental resources,
2. urban environment and waste management.