Re-introduce customary institutions to curb environmental conservation

A forest lobby group now wants the as a way of empowering the community in environment conservation.

The North Eastern Forest Conservancy Chair, Dr. Ahmed Mohammed said the county government through the county assemblies should come up with relevant legislations, including the infamous one where if one fells a tree they are fined 3 goats.

Dr. Mohammed was speaking at Garissa Teacher’s Training College to mark this year’s international day of forest. This year’s theme is forest and sustainable cities.

He expressed concern over incessant activities of felling down of indigenous trees whose lifespan is over 300 years by licensed charcoal burners, saying it was a worrying trend that needs to be urgently controlled.

We are staring at a looming environmental disaster if we don’t act now. It’s never too late, he said.

The Chairman further said there was need for the pastoralists to be provided with seed balls so that they can spread in grazing fields during rainy season as a way of adapting to climate change.

The regional conservancy coordinator said the exercise in Garissa Township and Ijara will see over 2,000 trees planted and urged the community to conserve them to reduce the effects of climate change.

The Garissa Deputy speaker, Mohammed Abass said the mathenge tree has adversely affected their grazing lands and forests and urged Kenya forest research institute to conduct more research on the tree to establish extra benefits. Abass said the tree that was an eye sore to the pastoralist should be eliminated.

The ‘mathenge’ tree species was first introduced during the 70s at the Bura irrigation scheme to act as wind breakers, but after the collapse of the project, livestock was spreading them through their waste.

Source: Kenya News Agency