Herders’ Guide on Integrated Rangeland Restoration (IRR)
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Globally ICARDA has the mandate to develop sustainable systems to protect and better use rangelands in the drylands in cooperation with national research organizations. About 25% of terrestrial surface is used for extensive pastoralism often increasing the risk of desertification, which is fueled by climate change. Unfortunately, by now single-disciplinary approaches prevail, but interdisciplinary research and environmental governance with landscape approach such as IRR are needed. Integrated Rangeland Restoration (IRR) is such new approach. IRR includes (1) participatory development of local climate change adaptation strategies, (2) establishment of Pastoral User Groups (PUG), (3) development of seed isles (for perennial shrubs) on rangelands with social fence for natural seeding and (4) enhancement of seasonal grazing for optimal use of seed isles and increased rangeland area. It can be implemented by district and local government in cooperation with NARS. IRR has the potential to sustain these fragile ecosystems in the course of climate change and simultaneously safeguard livelihoods specifically of the low-income strata, because it is a low-cost method and applicable in large areas. This makes it valuable for outscaling in many countries in the drylands worldwide.