Reverting Degraded Fallow Land into Climate Smart Agriculture in Thrimshing
Reverting Degraded Fallow Land into Climate Smart Agriculture in Thrimshing
Across Bhutan, fallow land is becoming an increasingly critical issue for the agriculture sector. Currently, Bhutan has 64,000 acres of fallow land which are not being used for agricultural purposes. Trashigang Dzongkhag alone has 9,391 acres of fallow land, of which about 200 acres is in Thrimshing Gewog. Because of large agricultural land being left fallow, this has greatly undermined the efforts of the government in achieving national food self-sufficiency. Furthermore, the area under degraded land has also significantly increased over the last decade or so due to fallowing of the prime agricultural land. Therefore, to achieve the objectives of national food self-sufficiency, land degradation neutrality, climate change mitigation and biodiversity conservation, degraded fallow land should be reverted back to agricultural production through sustainable land management.
In this context, about 74 fallow land owners (31 women and 43 men) from Thrimshing, Tsangpo and Bongzor chiwogs of Thrimshing gewog under Trashigang dzongkhag have come together to restore approximately 85 acres of degraded fallow land at Dribla. The proposed site has an altitude ranging from 1945 m to 2160 m above mean sea level with northern aspect direction. The slope gradient is less the 30 degree and has a complex slope form. It has a cool temperate climate with mean annual rainfall of about 1000 mm. The project site used to be a very productive agricultural farmland about two decades ago. However, it is currently being used as grazing land by the communities of three chiwogs. Due to unregulated grazing and poor water source management, one of the drinking water sources, that runs through the proposed sites, is slowly drying up.
In 2019, these individuals formed a group called Dribla Hazey Sonam Detsheun (DHSD) to revert their fallow land back to agricultural production by planting hazelnut trees with annual crops. However, due to lack of resources, the group has not been able to revert their fallow land back to agriculture. If this project is implemented, it will have many benefits across all concerned sectors. Firstly, it will help to revert 85 acres of fallow land back to agricultural production which would immensely contribute to achieving national food security. Secondly, it would enhance the rural livelihoods through income generation and thirdly, it would have multiple environmental benefits including preventing, reducing and reversing land degradation, reducing carbon emission, increasing biodiversity and enhancing agro-ecosystem services.
This project has a strong and direct relevance to the GEF-SGP Country Programme Strategy, specifically the following results indicators which contribute to sustainable agriculture and food security under OP-7:
? Indicator 6: Area of landscapes under sustainable land management in production systems (hectares) (GEF core indicator 4.3)
? Indicator 7: Area of degraded agricultural lands restored (hectares) (GEF core indicator 3.1)
? Indicator 8: Number of SGP countries supporting linkages and partnerships for sustainable food production practices (such as diversification and sustainable intensification) and supply chain management
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Project Snapshot

Dripla Hazzey Sonam Deytshen
Area Of Work:
Land Degradation
Grant Amount:
US$ 37,280.00
Co-Financing Cash:
US$ 69,201.00
Co-Financing in-Kind:
US$ 30,818.00
Project Number:
Currently under execution

Grantee Contact

Mr. Kelzang Tshering
Phone: +975 17725606
Email: NA


Tsangpo, Thrimshing
Thrimshing , Trashigang , 42001



SGP Country office contact

Mr. Tenzin Wangchuk
Mr. Tshering Phuntsho
009752322424 (ext:330)


UN House, Peling Lam (Street), Kawajangsa, Thimphu, P.O. Box No. 162
Thimphu, Bhutan, 11001