Small milk farmers play a crucial role in India, one of the world’s top milk markets. Unlike developed nations, in India, currently, 75-80% of milk production still comes from them. However, these farmers face issues that limit their productivity and make it difficult to increase their earnings. With an annual production of 164 million tonnes of milk, the dairy sector in India generates approximately USD 70 billion of revenue a year and is supposed to grow heavily. The past few decades have seen an increase in private sector investment in dairy farming, supply chain, processing facilities and backward integration. Dairy farming is also an important secondary source of income for 70 million rural households in India. These small dairy farmers are also suppliers to many private dairy companies. Most of these farmers lack capacity. They have an average herd size of 2-3 animals that produce only 2-6 litres of milk per cattle per day, just under a third of that in the west.
ASSIST is undertaking the following project with Lactalis – to establish two integrated model dairy farms; capacitate fifty local dairy farmers as cattle custodians to build local capacity and extend technical support; provide advisory support to ten pilot dairy farms of committed, progressive small dairy farmers and transform them into high-productive and profitable dairy farms; promote balanced cattle feed management and clean milk production among 150 dairy farmers; and establish a dairy support center which will have a registry of helpline numbers for farmers to access. It will also have a feed bank that will cater to the year-round supply of cattle feed.
Industrialization has the potential to help achieve poverty eradication, improve gender equality and labour standards and provide greater access to education and healthcare. At the same time, industrial processes play a major role in the degradation of the global environment. Industries in developing countries have significant potential to reduce the material, energy, and pollution per unit of industrial output.
The project’s aim was to implement a sustainable industrial development programme through the promotion of resource efficiency and waste management practices benchmarked on international standards. The envisaged outcome of the project was to help the supply chain factories of footwear, apparel and accessories (FAA) sectors in the developing countries of Asia (Bangladesh, Cambodia, Indonesia and China) to reduce their energy, water, waste and CO2 emission by 25% by 2015, compared to the 2011 baseline, and to contribute to a green economy and sustainable industrial development.
Over the course of the project, more than 500 attendees were trained and 35 factories participated from the target countries. The project resulted in total savings of USD 4 million in the first year with an average payback period of 2.5 years, 62,000 MWh per annum of energy saved (equivalent to 44,500 tons per annum of carbon dioxide emissions), nearly 633,000 m3 per annum of water saved and approximately 660 tonnes per annum of waste reduced.
As part of the initiative to develop H&M’s “Green Industry” strategy for the garment supply chains of Cambodia & Myanmar, ASSIST conducted a mapping of the existing stakeholders on renewable energy.
ASSIST conducted mapping studies and generated reports on solid waste, renewable energy, and water saving technologies. The reports provided a description of the subject’s current conditions in the country, the existing stakeholders and key players and the national solutions/technologies available. The reports also offer a more detailed analysis of the subject specifically in the context of the country’s garment industry and recommend relevant actions for the sector. Following those 6 reports (3 in Cambodia, 3 in Myanmar), H&M requested ASSIST replicate the studies in Vietnam.
Sugarcane farming is one of the most important segments in Indian agriculture. Over 50 million growers find livelihood through this crop supplying to the sugar industry, for which India ranks 2nd in the world economy. Maharashtra, the largest sugarcane belt in the country, suffers from unpredictable monsoons as well as low farmer yields (80T/HA), which can be largely attributed to unsustainable farming practices such as poor irrigation, lack of proper care for the soil, use of manual labor and related costs. However, over one-third of the yield comes from medium hold sugarcane farmers, indicating that building their capacity on sustainable practices and smart mechanization will work wonders to increase the overall yield of sugarcane.
ASSIST, SDF and DEG have partnered to implement Smart 4 Green – a structured project meant to sensitize sugarcane farmers on good agricultural practices, packaged into a practical and sustainable guide and coupled with a level of mechanization, that can help enhance the sugarcane farming sector and revive livelihood in these areas. The key objectives of the project are increasing awareness on 4 feet sugarcane plantation methods, upgrading farmer capacity on sustainable farming and smart mechanization, value chain enhancement through dealer training and ensuring the presence of continued support for farmers.
This project aims to support sugarcane farmers in the adoption of sustainable practices and smart mechanization through numerous interventions and partnerships with local academic institutions, government agencies, and financial service providers. A Farmer Help Centre for sugarcane farmers will be set up to provide continuous support and consultation. Pilot demonstration farms using the improved operations will be established, closely monitored and showcased for the sugarcane farmers who will also be undergoing training sessions. By the end of this project, sugarcane farmers in Maharashtra will understand the benefit and utilize advanced farming practices and mechanization, strengthening India’s sugarcane value chain and the overall agricultural sector.
Current patterns of energy consumption will lead to increased demand for thermal energy by almost 700% by 2050 when compared to 2005 levels. At the same time, the number of buildings is expected to manifold by 40% which contribute significantly to the increased energy usage. In order to minimize the energy use, we need to maximize the savings by implementing a sustainable Building Management System (BMS) in buildings, which will better manage as well as improve energy usage and performance, through the use of hardware, information, and data.
To achieve these objectives, the project focuses on creating awareness among business owners and decision makers about the importance of sustainable BMS implementation; attempts to enhance capacity among local facility technicians through establishment of state-of-the-art BMS training facility and up-skilling through targeted trainings; and implements pilots as showcases for sustainable BMS at prominent buildings in varied sectors to strengthen awareness.
Currently, CII-GBC, the home of Indian Green Building Council (IGBC) hosts one pilot solution while another IT company in Chennai called Aspire Systems hosts the second pilot – exhibiting significant savings and GHG reduction through a strong BMS solution. Furthermore, the training centre has been established at and in partnership with Dr. Ambedkar Institute of Productivity (AIP) – National Productivity Council (NPC), Chennai, a prestigious central government institute under the Ministry of Industry & Commerce, Government of India – paving way for practical learning, sustained operations and affordable up-skilling among technicians.
The Government of the Philippines, through the Department of Education (DepED) and its regional office in the Autonomous Region for Muslim (ARMM) requested the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to provide grant assistance to address adult literacy and employment generation in ARMM areas. In response, ASSIST worked on a project entitled “Empowering Bangsamoro Communities Through Adult Literacy and Productivity Enhancement Programs” which aimed to increase the employment opportunities among non-literate adults in ARMM provinces.
In close coordination with the Department of Education’s Alternative Learning System Program, ASSIST provided an assessment of the training needs, supported the development of learning modules, prepared the cost estimates and project plan, designed a monitoring framework and consolidated the findings of assessment activities.
Businesses in a country beset by disasters and catastrophes suffer from as much damage as its people. Most victims experience prolonged difficulty when “mission critical” enterprises are not able to get back on their feet soon after a calamity. ASSIST, together with TUV Rheinland Philippines Inc., implemented the project “Resilient Organizations Built for Sustained Transformation of Philippines (ROBUSTPHIL)” as a concrete step in making these mission-critical enterprises resilient. The project aimed to create the much-needed awareness for disaster and crisis preparedness covering the Four Rs: Risk Reduction, Readiness, Response, and Recovery.
The project equipped ten enterprises with the know-how on international standards and best practices that will make them resilient. Some of these international standards include Enterprise Risk Management (ERM), Information Security Management System (ISMS) and Business Continuity Management (BCM).
Through a CEO Forum, the project brought together top decision makers from various critical enterprises to propagate mass awareness on these standards. It also provided technical assistance and support for alignment towards the international standard (ISO 27001) on risk management. A best practice exchange forum was also conducted to share lessons and experiences in relation to climate action to create a multiplier effect. An e-learning toolkit on international standards was also provided and distributed to over 100 enterprises.
The Indonesian manufacturing sector is one of the nation’s largest sources of fossil-fuel derived greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Overall, manufacturing is responsible for over 50 percent of Indonesia’s fossil-fuel emissions (including electricity use within manufacturing) and is continuing to grow at the rate of 6–7 % each year. Most of these sub-sectors are key to the current or future Indonesian economy as measured by a variety of statistics including their value added (textile, garments, transportation equipment, food and beverage), annual growth rate (auto parts, non-metallic minerals) and economic multipliers (food and beverage, textiles).
Jointly funded and implemented by PT TÜV NORD I and DEG, “LEAP – Leapfrog towards Efficiency And Progress through Low Carbon Economy in Indonesia” aimed to reduce GHG emissions in the major industries of the manufacturing sector, achieve energy and material efficiency among participating companies and contribute to poverty reduction by minimizing the impacts of climate change and promoting sustainable development. The project worked towards initiating a low carbon economy in Indonesia through awareness raising and capacity building activities.
The project has reached a number of milestones upon its culmination. It successfully raised awareness on climate change-related topics in the public and private sectors, generated interest among local companies to adopt energy management systems benchmarking ISO 14064 and ISO 50001 (towards reducing their GHG emissions and contribute to the switch towards a low–carbon economy), build local capacity through Training of Trainer Workshops, development of an e-learning kit, e-newsletter, web portal and Best Practices Exchange Forum. Fifteen selected companies also received technical assistance in the form of energy audits and assessment conducted by local trainers and technical experts.
It is shown that limited access to financial services constrains economic growth in the Philippines. This is especially true for lower socio-economic groups, including microenterprises, which must then turn to moneylenders, pawnshops or lending investors for credit instead of formal institutions for credit. USAID’s Microenterprise Access to Banking Services (MABS) Program targets these lower socio-economic groups and micro-entrepreneurs by working with rural banks to reach such groups in a profitable, but equitable, manner.
ASSIST with support from USAID implemented the “Micro-Enterprises Access to Banking Services (MABS) – Digitization of Learning Content” project, with the aim to accelerate national economic transformation by encouraging the Philippine rural banking industry to significantly expand access to microfinance services. They were tasked to expand the provision of financial services, both lending and deposit mobilization, to micro-entrepreneurs and other groups at the lower socio-economic levels in the Philippines through existing networks of rural and cooperative rural banks.
The project was able to achieve the development of distance learning modules, results-based training courses for staff of MABS participating rural banks and made these available both online and on CDs. It also created seven distance learning course materials in both CD and online format and microfinance officers of 350 rural banks acquired necessary technical knowledge and skills to carry out their jobs.