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The climate in Georgia has changed dramatically since the early 90´s. The Shiraki valley had a long tradition for growing wheat and sunflower, and historically this region has been called "the crop store" of Georgia. In the time of Georgia being part of the Soviet Union it was in fact the main production area for these two crops. But right after the liberation of the Soviet Union, Georgia was hit by an enormous energy crisis. The vital gas pipes from Mother Russia was cut off, and to survive the cold winters all wood in the area was chopped down and used for heating. It left the country-side stripped from it's so-called wind-breaks, small trees and bushes, protecting the crop and soil from the desert wind. The combination of a warmer climate, more frequent droughts, and the non-existence of windbreaks has shown to be crucial for the outcome of the crops grown in Shiraki valley which is more than halved. Today the region of Shiraki valley is working together with the support of UNEP (United Nations Environment Program) and the World Bank to re-establish the windbreaks. Nursery forest production sites, greenhouses, production of quality seedlings with stronger root systems should bring a higher survival rate of the local tree sorts used. The hope is that the rehabilitation of the windbreaks will enable the region to start increasing the amount of harvest, and bring the share of Georgian wheat supply back to normal.
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Esben Hardt / Ace & Ace
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2545x1697 / 2.0MB
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Georgia wind breaks
The climate in Georgia has changed dramatically since the early 90´s. The Shiraki valley had a long tradition for growing wheat and sunflower, and historically this region has been called "the crop store" of Georgia. In the time of Georgia being part of the Soviet Union it was in fact the main production area for these two crops. But right after the liberation of the Soviet Union, Georgia was hit by an enormous energy crisis. The vital gas pipes from Mother Russia was cut off, and to survive the cold winters all wood in the area was chopped down and used for heating. It left the country-side stripped from it's so-called wind-breaks, small trees and bushes, protecting the crop and soil from the desert wind. The combination of a warmer climate, more frequent droughts, and the non-existence of windbreaks has shown to be crucial for the outcome of the crops grown in Shiraki valley which is more than halved. Today the region of Shiraki valley is working together with the support of UNEP (United Nations Environment Program) and the World Bank to re-establish the windbreaks. Nursery forest production sites, greenhouses, production of quality seedlings with stronger root systems should bring a higher survival rate of the local tree sorts used. The hope is that the rehabilitation of the windbreaks will enable the region to start increasing the amount of harvest, and bring the share of Georgian wheat supply back to normal.