Search for sustainable
Wood fuel use roars on
A Key stakeholder conference is underway in Kitui to kick off the formulation of policy on sustainable wood fuel management in the county and beyond.
Stakeholders drawn from the national, county governments and key development Partners are exploring the status of governance and trade in Kitui as well as conducting wood fuel stakeholders mapping and analysis.
Kitui County Minister for Environment and Natural Resources Mr John Makau opened the conference and underlined the resolve of the government to maintain the ban on charcoal burning and trade in the county.
He said the ban had triggered several challenges to the county including livelihood issues and added that the county government welcomed deliberations that would lead to finding long term solutions in sustainability in the wood fuels value chain.
Among the presenters at the conference is Dr. Phosiso Sola and Dr. Jonathan Muriuki from ICRAF, , the Value Chains Advisor in the Governor’s Office Dr. Temi Mutia , Mr Eric Wanga from ADRA, Philip Kisonyan from FAO and Mieke Boune from ICRAF.
Other key stakeholders represented include the Kenya Forest Services (KFS) , the Kenya Wildlife Services (KWS) and WARMA
Mr Makau said the law alone is not enough in finding a solution to sustainability issues and cited the enactment of Kitui’s Charcoal Management Act 2014- which has been undermined by enforcement difficulties.
He said the quest to find a sustainable approach to wood fuels would lessens the burden faced by the county government of Kitui in enforcing the charcoal ban. “This initiative could not have come at a better time and will no doubt reduce the burden we are facing, It is not an easy matter for us”, said Mr Makau.
He announced that the government would from tomorrow begin distributing chicken to families in 12 wards in areas most adversely affected by the charcoal burning menace, key among them, Tseikuru, Ngomeni Nguni, and Mutha areas to provide alternative source of livelihoods besides charcoal. “ We have 12 wards where families will receive over 5,000 chicken to create an alternative to burning charcoal. We have included a budget support for these mitigation steps in our CIDP plans so that we restore forest cover in our county”, Mr Makau said.
This is a 3 year project supported by ADRA in conjunction with World Agroforestry Center and Food and Agricultural Organization which will result in knowledge based policy options and engagement for more sustainable wood fuel value chains.