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  Mounting global concerns about climate change and biodiversity loss are bringing even closer attention to a related human rights issue—the growing threats and violence directed at environmental defenders. These are people who seek to protect populations, territories, livelihoods, cultures, and biodiversity from the harmful environmental effects of ill-advised or illegal resource use. Beyond the…Read More

Climate Change, Property Rights, & Resource Governance

IntroductionClimate change and associated policy responses will cause progressive, extreme and unpredictable shifts in the value of land and natural resources. Climate change and societal responses will disrupt existing tenure regimes by contributing to the forces that drive migration. Tenure considerations will be crucial to the equitable distribution of benefits and the management of transaction...Read More

Fact Sheet: Land Tenure and Food Security

There is a growing body of evidence suggesting that securing land and resource rights for men and women has a positive impact on food security and broader development outcomes, such as household investment, agricultural productivity, women’s empowerment, nutrition, and more robust rental markets for farmland. The existing literature highlighting the positive impact of strengthened land…Read More

Fact Sheet: Land Tenure and Women’s Empowerment

Land is the most critical economic resource for the vast majority of the rural poor who depend on agriculture for their livelihoods. In particular, women’s land rights are fundamental to rural development outcomes, as women’s ownership and control over land can affect what households produce and how the proceeds from agricultural production are allocated within…Read More

Gender Issues in the Artisanal and Small-Scale Mining Sector

Artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM) is a significant source of income for tens of millions of people in developing countries. ASM refers to small groups and individuals engaged in low-cost and laborintensive excavation of minerals using minimal mechanization.

Green Energy and Mining: Challenges and Opportunities

  Just as fossil fuels have been the backbone of global energy needs for over a century, several dozen minerals will make possible the green technologies of tomorrow’s energy systems. Addressing the development challenges associated with mining is vital for a low-carbon future. This Issue Brief summarizes key findings of the Mining and the Green…Read More

Issue Brief: Environmental Defenders

This USAID Issue Brief on Environmental Defenders provides an introduction to the range of issues facing environmental defenders worldwide, followed by a discussion of key areas of engagement and donor support that demonstrate possible responses to protect the rights and well-being of environmental defenders. Environmental defenders are people who “take a stand and peaceful action…Read More

Land and Conflict

Introduction: Land and Conflict Land so pervasively underpins human activity that it usually plays some role during war and civil violence. Land-related issues figure into many violent disputes around the world. Ongoing communal violence in Nigeria and Sudan is tied to competition over scarce fertile land and poor resource governance. Disputes over access to land...Read More