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Sustainable Land Management

USAID natural resource management and economic growth assistance focuses on engaging with rural communities to boost agricultural productivity and incomes while improving landscape scale conservation. USAID helps Tanzania conserve its unique biodiversity by addressing policies, management practices, and livelihood options conducive to sustainable management of the country’s natural resource base.

As a direct result of the policy reforms and institutional capacity building efforts of USAID, since 1998, a total of 38 community-owned wildlife management areas were established countrywide. Of these, 17 wildlife management areas were granted full user rights—meaning they can negotiate and strike business deals with private sector ventures and benefit from conservation revenues generated. USAID’s support to this process includes assistance on governance, management, land use planning, anti-poaching and conservation businesses such as tourism. Since 2008, WMAs have earned a cumulative of $5 million in revenue which has gone back to the participating communities. Revenue earned from the areas was used to support community projects such as building of dispensaries, teacher’s houses, school blocks and support orphans going to school. More than 400,000 people have benefited directly and indirectly from wildlife management areas.

In Zanzibar, USAID partners with communities in the Menai Bay area to develop environmentally sustainable livelihood activities as a means to increase household income and quality of life while reducing pressure on the coastal resources and marine environment. USAID supports floating line seaweed farming to increase yields and reduce negative environmental impacts; pearl farming and jewelry making; and business development and entrepreneurship skills building.

Last updated: February 11, 2014

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