Friday, July 8, 2011

0 Decision to change

Most people in the rural areas in Kenya can attest that the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) has precipitated a lot of development in the rural areas, where the ‘direct government funding’ could not reach before. Roads have been repaired; bore holes sunk, bridges, dispensaries and schools built with CDF kitty (especially where leaders were not corrupt). Similar case can apply to the protection of our environment and restoration of our damaged ecosystems. As the government aims to increase the current forest cover from 1.7% to 10% by ambitiously planting of 7.6 billion trees, Constituency Environment Fund (CEF) proposal can be a means of achieving this goal in an inclusive and a participatory manner. It will ensure that every area of Kenya receives funds for restoring and protecting whatever part of their environment they prioritize.
Under the right legal framework which can be an Act of Parliament as supported by Chapter 5 part b on Environment and Natural Resource in the New Constitution, our environment can take a new dimension. We can then boast of vibrant springs and flowing streams, well protected river courses, desilted dams hence increased volume of water in reservoirs and increased forest cover. Reduced environmental destruction can only occur when people become aware of the contribution of the local environment to local, national and global climate and environment. That is they become ‘environmental-wise’ or ‘eco-wise’, meaning they utilize the environment in a sustainable way, and thus expect positive feedbacks from the environment too.
Quoting the Nobel Laureate Prof. Wangari Maathai, Founder - The Green Belt Movement, ‘if we take care of the environment, it will take care of us, but if we don’t it will kill us’. She also said that ‘we see carcasses of animals everywhere….we can see carcasses of people everywhere’. How true! We have seen communities loose thousands of animals, and Kenyans die of hunger in the recent times in places there used to receive good amounts of rainfall, or of floods in areas with no history of flooding. What happened? 'Climate and environmental change.'...of course, in America and China, probably, but most of 'it' right here at home!  We have cut down trees indiscriminately and wantonly destroyed every aspect of our environment, and have eroded our only buffer to environmental woes. With no trees and our soils capped, rain water cannot recharge the ground water table, and every rain drop runs off. Two drops carries off the top soil, ten drops sweeps animals and people. And ‘as a nation’s soil goes, so goes the nation’. As Kenya loses her soil, it is simultaneously loosing the means to feed herself. We then go begging for food while we can strategically expect and  plan for sub-normal situations. Dams and lakes are slowly but surely turning into marshes following heavy siltation, and reduced in-flows. Biodiversity (plants and animals) that forms a basis of our robust tourism industry is in the process not spared. We are indeed destroying Mother Nature at our own peril.


Post a Comment


Functional Ecosystems Copyright © 2011 - |- Template created by O Pregador - |- Powered by Blogger Templates