Down to Earth: How Farmers in Zanzibar Are Tackling Climate Change From the Ground Up

How are farmers on a small island off the coast of Tanzania adapting to climate change, restoring the local ecosystem, and protecting their livelihoods? It all starts with a spice forest.

By Zahra Sethna on July 13, 2020

In this episode, join IISD's Director of Communications, Zahra Sethna, as she travels to a small island off the coast of Zanzibar, which is very hilly, very green, and very much affected by climate change. 

"It's a big disaster," says Mbarouk Mussa Omar, the Executive Director of Community Forests Pemba, during a heat wave in the middle of February. "It's threatening our livelihood, our food security." 

Much of Pemba's Indigenous forests were cut down in the 19th century to open up land for growing cloves; since then, even more deforestation has occurred for construction, firewood, and other crops. But local farmers have come up with a creative solution to bring back the trees, regenerate the land, and become more resilient, all without sacrificing their income.

It starts with a spice forest. Press play to hear the full story.