The sustainable palm oil company, AGROACEITE, in partnership with the Asociación de Desarrollo Integral del Trifinio Suroccidente (ASODITSO) and the Institute for Climate Change (ICC in Spanish), carried out this year a new Certification Course on “Community Adaptation to Climate Change”.
This is the second certification course that AGROACEITE offers in the southwestern border of Guatemala with the objective of strengthening the capacities of communities to adapt to the impacts of impending climate change and to learn of the importance of good risk management in vulnerable areas.
Guatemala is among the countries most vulnerable to climate change. According to the ICC, the effects of this phenomenon are already felt and even if current emissions were reduced to zero, there will still be changes for several decades, which is why adaptation is necessary. Work must be done on both mitigation and adaptation.
The course consists of theoretical and practical training for nine months and covers topics that go from basic concepts such as integrated watershed management and definitions of climate change, to field trips to implement lessons learned, and to learn about various techniques on community adaptation to climate change. To date, nine sessions have been held. The first tour covered the high, medium and low part of the Ocosito river basin and more recently, Santo Domingo Suchitepéquez.
More than 70 people participate in the Certification Course, among them, workers of AGROACEITE, community leaders of 12 communities of the three southwestern departments, officials of the municipalities of La Blanca, San Marcos and Coatepeque, Quetzaltenango, and Municipal Firemen.
The participating communities are San Luis, Pomal, Los Encuentros, Troje, San Rafael Pacayá I, Valle Lirio, Colonia Diaz, Chiquirines, Carrizales, Morenas, Colonia Barillas and La Blanquita, from the municipalities of La Blanca, San Marcos; Coatepeque, Quetzaltenango and Retalhuleu, Retalhuleu.
Bernhard Roehrs, corporate director of AGROACEITE, said that “these trainings are part of a comprehensive program of environmental conservation and adaptation to climate change, carried out by AGROACEITE with local actors, government agencies and non-governmental organizations.”