Desertification And DroughtDay

The World DesertificationAndDroughtDay was marked in Korolle Oasis in Chalbi Desert, Marsabit County. Communities that depend on the springs and leaders reiterated their commitment to protect and conserve the critical water resource which people and their livestock rely on.

“It is a big challenge to plant trees in ASAL areas. What we have been sensitizing people on is to do local seed collection. The native species like acacia do very well here.”

Dr Mamo B. Mamo, Director General NEMA

Desertification And Drought Day

“We know that the climate is changing and land is getting very degraded because of the increasing population of people and livestock. We are here today to work with the communities to raise the level of awareness.”

“How do we strike a balance so that people can live in harmony with their lands? It is not simple but possible with the right investments, what we call nature-based solutions, that don’t degrade the lands & give income to communities.”

I had an opportunity to visit the magnificent Marsabit National Park ahead of #DesertificationAndDroughtDay which was Marked in Korole Springs in Chalbi Desert, Marsabit County. The reserve has two crater lakes, Sokorte Gudho (Lake Paradise) and Sokorte Dikho (Elephant Pool).

Mohamed Awer

Greening Kenya Campaign Gains Momentum

The role of forests in climate change mitigation cannot be gainsaid considering the benefits to local communities, Environment and Forestry Cabinet Secretary Keriako Tobiko has said.

He noted that the connection between forestry and climate change is critical to forest dependent communities who continually adapt new conditions caused by the phenomenon to derive their livelihoods.

“Rains are no longer predictable as they used to be,that is why rivers are drying up, the Maasai Mara National Reserve and the Mara river ecosystem is threatened because we have denigrated our forest reserves”. The CS said.

He observedthat there are 2.5 million hectares of gazzeted natural forest in Kenya out of which 140,000 hectares are degraded.

It takes Kenya Forest Service about one year to rehabilitate 5,000 hectares making it impossible for the government to achieve rehabilitation of forest reserves alone he added.

It is against this backdrop that the President issued a decree that the attainment of 10% National tree cover be accelerated by 2022 and subsequent directives that all Government Ministries, Departments and Parastatals/Agencies (MDAs) to commit 10% of their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) budget to tree growing activities.

Kenya Prisons and National Youth Service have come together in a joint programme dubbed ‘Greening Kenya’ to grow 50 million tree seedlings to help meet the target. Other benefits to be accrued from this programme include mitigating climate change and raising environmental awareness, generating income for households and communities as well as attaining the constitutional requirement of 10% tree cover.

The CS spoke at a high level meeting with investors at a Nairobi hotel where a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed between the Government of Kenya and the UN Environment on the Greening Kenya Campaign.  The government was represented by Cabinet Secretaries Keriako Tobiko (Environment) and Dr Fred Matiangi of and Interior while the UN Environment was represented by Ms Juliette Biao, Director and Regional Representative, UN Environment.

The campaign has so far received pledges worth about 4million from Communication Authority of Kenya, Energy Regulatory Authority and Philanthropist Manu Chandaria among others.

A group photo of Top government officials and stakeholders during the greening Kenya Campaign

IInnovative solutions top agenda at African Ministerial Conference on the Environment

Nairobi, 17 September 2018 – The need to invest in innovative solutions and interventions and promote sustainable consumption and production will top the agenda at the seventh special session of the African Ministerial Conference on the Environment (AMCEN), which takes place from 17 to 19 September in Nairobi.

Under the theme: Turning Environmental Policies into Action through Innovative Solutions,” ministers will deliberate on key messages for the forthcoming African Biodiversity Ministerial Summit which will be held in Egypt in November this year, prior to the 2018 UN Conference on Biodiversity.

More information….

Global Sustainable Blue Economy Conference

The Global Sustainable Blue Economy Conference is the first global conference on the sustainable blue economy. Over 4,000 participants from around the world are coming together to learn how to build a blue economy that:

  • Harnesses the potential of our oceans, seas, lakes and rivers to improve the lives of all, particularly people in developing states, women, youth and Indigenous peoples
  • Leverages the latest innovations, scientific advances and best practices to build prosperity while conserving our waters for future generations

More information…