Integrated soil-water-energy system as a climate-smart agro-sylvo-pastoral production model in Cinzana, Mali

Photo: P. Casier (CGIAR)

Project description 

The integration of livestock production systems into the CSV of Mali is considered a unique opportunity to boost the livestock sector of the Segou region of Mali considering its huge potential for poverty alleviation and food security. Considering the limited availability and adoption of range improvement interventions, CCAFS is keen to use its CSV in Cinzana to promote the adoption of climate-smart agro-silvopastoral systems for improved and sustained fodder availability and livestock nutrition. Sufficient documentation of fodder species (trees, shrubs, forbes, grasses), farmer perceptions of their use, priorities among livestock producers, and their nutritional profiles are also considered knowledge gaps in the project area which are crucial for strategic livestock farm technology development, feeding and supplementation to livestock ration in the region.

The objectives of the project are: 

  • Diagnose crop and livestock production constraints and problems to inform the planning and designing of CSA interventions
  • Establish demonstration plots with seasoning garden and various soil and water conservation techniques and improved crop varieties for farmer evaluation of effectiveness using crop productivity indicators
  • Design and implement an irrigated-grazed-paddocked-silvopastoral system (IGRIPAS) for improved fodder productivity and livestock nutrition
  • Assess household energy needs and conduct a life cycle analysis of a model agrosilvopasture system for bioenergy production
  • Evaluate the economic important of the agrosilvopastoral system

Expected Output/Outcome

  • Baseline information on livestock production developed as entry point for defining development options for sustainable livestock production;
  • Various CSA practices and technologies tested for scaling;
  • Botanical and nutritional profile of priority fodder species developed and made available to all livestock stakeholders;
  • A model agro-silvopastoral system developed and demonstrated for local adoption;
  • Life cycle assessment of agro-silvopastoral system conducted to inform management practices for emission reduction;
  • Carbon sequestration within the agro-silvopastoral system determined.
  • Farmers, policy makers and development advocates adopting the agrosilvopasture system for improved food security and sustainable bioenergy production

Gender and Youth

  • Journal paper on gender participation and socio-economic analysis of livestock production


  • International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT)
  • Mali National Agricultural Research Institute (IER)

Further information

For further information, please contact Dr. Mathieu Ouédraogo ( or Dr. Siaka Dembélé (

Project Activities

Since 2011, CCAFS has used its CSV models in West Africa to test and validate several agricultural interventions with the participation of various local partners. While potential agricultural innovations that simultaneously achieve the triple wins of CSA are evolving from the CSVs, there is limited evidence of their cost-effectiveness. Together with local partners, we will assess the costs and benefits of proven CSA technologies and accentuate implications on adoption, investment opportunities and development of business models in West Africa.

The CSV AR4D sites of West Africa have seen a number of promising CSA technologies realized from the participatory development and testing of the CSV model in Ghana, Mali, Niger, Senegal and Burkina Faso. For the scaling out/up perspective, these results/achievements still need robust evidence of their effectiveness as well as the enabling environment that can bring them to scale. Moreover, considering the role of livestock in food security and poverty reduction in West Africa, CCAFS is keen to meet a major need in the region by using the CSVs of Ghana and Mali to promote the adoption of climate-smart agro-silvopastoral systems for improved and sustained fodder availability and livestock nutrition. In addition to the documentation and nutritional profiling and testing of fodder species, the potential for firewood and charcoal production from multipurpose fodder species shall be explored alongside the development of a bio-digester using manure from livestock.

In the quest to improve the capacity of farmers to better manage climate related risks and build more resilient livelihoods, CCAFS-West Africa has since 2011 been piloting in its CSV AR4D sites of Ghana how downscaled seasonal forecast information through mobile phones (called the Esoko platform) could help farmers adapt to climate change and variability. With promising results emerging, CCAFS intends to help Esoko develop a viable business model as a means of strengthening local private institutions and making CIS accessible to millions of farmers across Ghana. The propose work will develop a public-private partnership business model by analyzing current PPP components and establishing evidence on the economic cost of CIS and delivered through the Esoko platform.

Previous results recommended Afzelia africana, Annona senegalensis, Ficus gnaphalocarpa, Pterocarpus erinaceus and Faidherbia albida as the most prioritized browse species in the CSV based mainly on their preference by, and therefore for, ruminants. These identified candidate browse species seem to be overly exploited in the whole of northern Ghana for fodder, as medicine and even for timber, resulting in declining yield of biomass. This therefore necessitates the development of a multispecies fodder bank that concentrated the species on the same plot of land alongside palatable woody legumes, herbaceous legumes, high-yielding forage grasses and some food-feed crops to increase the opportunity for ensuring sustainable all-year-round fodder production and availability. We will estimate the resource use efficiency, gender mainstreaming, seasonal fodder productivity, litter accumulation, quality of C inputs and soil C sequestration within the fodder bank. An economic evaluation of fodder bank will be determined and shared to inform local investment needs.

Project Deliverables