Sustainable development

PaLM are committed to working in a way that is consistent with and pushes the boundaries of environmental best practice.

PaLM have made a number of exploratory interventions since the start of work in Mtwara in 2006, around environmentally sustainable livelihoods and to reduce our own carbon footprint.

The issue of renewable energy and environmental advocacy is increasingly pressing in the region, with the advent of offshore gas drilling and in the context of climate change.

For all the beauty and diversity of ecosystems in the region, socio economic development and globalisation are placing enormous pressure on local marine and terrestrial resources, while environmental advocacy remains limited.

PaLM is committed to siting reproductive decision making in the contexts of reproductive rights and wider rights to healthy and safe environments. 

PaLM is currently looking to build its capacity to integrate these themes with its core SRH/E work through new recruitments to the board and new partner organisations.

Exploratory Projects :

Naliendele Renewable Energy workshops

As part of our commitment to participatory learning and development, PaLM has pioneered a program of education on renewable energy in schools and piloted a model for community solar microgeneration.

School pupils participating in the 2008 PaLM SRE programme had the opportunity to design and build model solar powered cars as part of a hands-on introduction to renewable energy developed by Sheffield based education trust Plugging in to the Sun.

Mpapura solar microgeneration pilot project

In Mpapura, a small town with no connection to the electricity grid, PaLM enabled a community group to establish a solar microgeneration business charging mobile phones. This has the potential to let marginalized groups participate in the dynamic, but otherwise largely inaccesible renewable energy sector.

Tree planting

Palm aims to plant trees to reduce its carbon footprint. Naliendele Primary School expressed an interest in fruit trees, and PaLM sourced 10 banana trees from a small farmer on the outskirts of Mtwara. These were planted in mid 2007. A year later they had all survived, despite severe water shortages in Naliendele and failure of the piped supply. One tree had set fruit.

A peer groups set up by Ngome has taken on responsibility for tending the trees. We want to plant avocado trees next.

London-Mtwara school link

PaLM ran the same renewable energy workshops at a school in North London and shared these experiences with Naliendele via video. A presentation at the London school in turn showed footage from Tanzania and explored linkages between renewable energy, global warming and fragile marine ecosystems and livelihoods in the West Indian Ocean region.

We hope to build on these contacts to set up a North-South education link under DfID’s global schools programme.