Partnership with Rick Steves!
Our planet is facing an urgent problem: climate change. Glaciers are melting, oceans are rising, forests are burning, and storms are raging. And, it’s well-documented that climate change disproportionately affects the developing world—which means the families Agros serves are among those who suffer most.
Rick Steves knows that his love for worldwide travel contributes to climate change. Fortunately, Rick is also passionate about fighting climate change. In 2019, his company Rick Steves’ Europe announced their Climate Smart Commitment. The company explained, “Starting in 2020, Rick Steves’ Europe is investing $1 million a year out of our profits in a portfolio of carefully selected nonprofits that fight climate change through government advocacy and on-the-ground work. Our goal: to pay our fair share of the environmental cost that our travelers incur, and to do so in a way that empowers communities throughout the developing world.”
We are so excited that Agros International is among the inaugural grantees of Rick Steves' Climate Smart Commitment!
In Agros' work in Central America, we’ve seen how climate change, agriculture, and poverty are deeply intertwined. Current farming methods do not meet the world’s growing demand for food, do not generate enough income for those growing the food, and contribute a third of all greenhouse emission worldwide.
We have also seen that Agros’ work can be part of solving these problems!
With Rick Steves’ support, Agros' Climate-Smart Agribusiness Center in San José, Nicaragua, will establish three new training modules. These modules will help hundreds of farming families produce more food, generate more income, and mitigate their contributions to climate change. The new modules are:
- Hydroponic production: Hydroponic systems use water instead of soil and have a much higher yield per square foot than land, resulting in quadruple the number of harvests per year and a reduction in the use of chemicals and water for irrigation by over 50%.
- Vermicomposting: Vermicomposting uses worms to transform organic waste into rich humus soil, allowing farmers to replace chemical fertilization with organic farm-made fertilizers (thereby keeping money within the community), improving soil conditions, and reducing production costs.
- Forest and fruit tree nursery: As part of the reforestation effort, forest tree seedlings will be used to protect sensitive ecological areas, while commercially viable fruit trees will be used to help control soil erosion, regulate temperature and establish additional sources of income.
You can read more about Rick Steves’ Climate Smart Commitment and his work with Agros International here.