Integrated Management of Critical Ecosystems (IMCE) Project
The primary objective of the Integrated Management of Critical Ecosystems (IMCE) Project is to help the farmers around 4 selected critical ecosystems (Rugezi, Kamiranzovu, Akagera and Rweru-Mugesera) to adopt sustainable agricultural intensification technologies that increase agricultural productivity and improve farmers’ livelihood while protecting the rare biological resources of wetlands.
The IMCE Project is financed by the GEF, with the World Bank, as the implementing agency. This financing is destined to supplement additional costs of the activities of the RSSP project (MINAGRI) to support institutional, technical and financial capacities of farmers in order to help them to evolve agricultural traditional practices towards improved likely technologies to ensure the increased agricultural production and the conservation of the biodiversity outside of the protected surfaces/areas.
This is achieving through the development and the implementation of the community based integrated management plans of the ecosystems, while using the small watersheds as basic units for the planning of the management of the natural resources.
The IMCE Project is divided into four components:
(i) Component 1: Development of a policy and regulatory framework for sustainable wetland and natural resource management;
(ii) Component 2 : Capacity building and institution strengthening for integrated ecosystem management;
(iii) Component 3 : Development and implementation of community-based integrated ecosystem management plans for critical ecosystems;
(iv) Component 4: Project management and coordination.
Through the implementation of the Project, Rwanda has created local institutional tools (53 Watershed Management committees at 53 sector level), developed technical tools (4 Watershed Management plans and 9 Community-based Management Plans of critical swamps) and elaborated legal instruments (4 Ministerial decrees and a Bill on swamps).
This set tools and instrument already allows improving wetlands governance in Rwanda what increases it capacity to contribute, in the long-term conservation and sustainable use of wetlands. Also the communication and information initiatives (Film documentaries, promotional material, conferences and workshops, of the Head of State speeches, Rwanda State of Environment) strengthen the education and the public awareness in wetlands international importance.
In order to plan the use and to define how to add value to marshlands, REMA has conducted a national marshland inventory in 2008. The main outputs of this inventory are the following:
10.5% of Rwanda area
41% Covered by Natural Vegetation
53% Covered by Fields (148 344 ha)
6% Fallows (Jachères)
Three mains management modalities were targeted and Rwanda marshlands were categorized:
182 Swamps - 145 768 ha which are shared by several Districts
365 Cultivated Swamps of > 100 ha – Total 184 032 ha with 130 873 ha cultivated