The Government of Kenya through the Ministry of Environment, Climate Change and Forestry has embarked on an ambitious program of harnessing the natural capacity of wetlands to buffer communities against the adverse effects of climate change and to boost adaptation and resilience across the country.
While speaking during her visit to the wetland areas in Marsabit county, Environment, Climate Change and Forestry CS Soipan Tuya announced the government’s commitment to the wetlands’ restoration across the nation, saying that loss of wetlands is associated with greater adverse impact on human beings, livestock, economic costs and also ecologically.
Revealing that at least 8,000 wetlands have been earmarked for restoration across Kenya, Soipan added that wetlands are globally key in carbon sinks through the storage of vast amounts of carbon and thus aiding in climate change mitigation.
She cited the Kalacha Irrigation Scheme as a perfect model that is currently used as a pilot case study.
The cabinet secretary said that to ensure that the program succeeds, government will employ workers popularly labelled as “the green army” to help with the ambitious greening program targeting the planting and nurturing of at least 15 billion trees by the year 2030.
Isaack Elmi who Heads the Department of Ecosystem Management at the Ministry of Environment hailed the launched ecosystem restoration programs as one of the proven methods of ensuring national food security and long-term climate change mitigation in Kenya.
He added that the program will also ensure the creation of job opportunities for many jobless youths in Kenya.
North Horr resident Mohammed Galgallo on his part appealed to the State to utilize the wetlands and the few permanent water sources to boost mega irrigation projects in Marsabit County.
He appealed to the government to fund a mega irrigation project to boost food security in the region.