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Preventing Kunene turning into real desert

Joe Shivute of FNB’s Oshakati branch.

A large group of young people earlier this month came together in the Opuwo Youth Centre Hall to start a discussion group focussing on strategies to address the rapidly deteriorating arid environment of the Kunene Region.

The FNB Foundation recently approved a sponsorship of N$ 125,000 per year for three years to avert desertification of the Kunene Region. This project has been implemented by Dr. Axel Rothauge, from AgriConsult Namibia and more funding has been received from the European Union.
FNB Area Manager North-West, Mr Joe Shivute, explained that 168 countries in the world are affected by desertification. In Africa alone it has wiped out from 4% to 12% of agriculture due to a deteriorating environment. He added: “Every year, an area equivalent in size to three Switzerland’s is lost worldwide to desertification. FNB has therefore-introduced a number of green technologies to its banking services, amongst others paperless ATM transactions to save trees.” FNB Namibia is furthermore the forerunner in terms of certified green buildings as their new, green Head Office in Windhoek is nearing completion.
FNB Namibia, however, not only sought a more environmentally friendly approach in the building. The bank installed solar power plants at its Disaster Recovery site and its Prosperita branch. On these sites alone, the bank expects to save 50% of electrical consumption costs. That is just the beginning. FNB intends to continue its commitment to supporting alternative energy sources, by installing solar power plants in its new FNB head office building and at branches across the country. Over the last four years FNB has facilitated a United Nations development programme under which 300 low-interest loans have been granted to fund installation of solar power.

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