Climate idea
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Government of Kenya

Climate idea

Empower Forest Communities To Champion Fight Against Climate Change

Forests provide an array of benefits and ecosystem services, including water provision, food, medicine, shelter, energy, and fuelwood for millions of people in this region. Forest loss and degradation lead to socio-economic losses, especially the loss of the said benefits and ecosystem services. Forests are also important for biodiversity conservation and climate change mitigation. According to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, 22.7 percent or about 674,419,000 ha of Africa is forested. Closer home, Kenya is among the countries in the world with a forest cover of less than 10 percent of the total land mass. The national forest cover currently stands at about seven percent falling short of the constitutionally required threshold of 10 percent tree cover. Last September, African leaders parleyed in Nairobi for the Africa Climate Summit and, among many other recommendations, emphasized the need for nature-based solutions to climate change mitigation and adaptation. ADVERTISEMENT. SCROLL TO CONTINUE READING. We are in dire straits, and the picture is not rosy. Continued forest loss further aggravates the triple planetary crisis of biodiversity, pollution, and climate change. The world is currently far from reaching its climate targets, with temperatures steadily heading towards almost 3°C of warming compared to pre-industrial levels. Vulnerability to climate shocks due to rising global temperatures has become the norm in the region, resulting in dire economic consequences from the recent droughts and floods that have plagued the region. Forests play a large role in our ability to fight the vagaries of climate change because of the massive amount of carbon they emit when they’re degraded or cleared. Higher levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere are disrupting natural weather patterns, causing harm to the Earth’s climate. To mitigate against this dire situation, countries have already adopted the Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation, popularly known as ‘REDD’+ framework to protect forests as part of the Paris Agreement which will help in reducing human pressure on forests that result in greenhouse gas emissions at the national level Today marks the International Day of Forests and sadly we celebrate the day when human activities are destroying the world’s forests at an unprecedented rate, despite being vital to supporting life on Earth. Sub-Saharan African countries whose lives and economies are tied closely to land, and the environment have experienced substantial forest cover loss. Due to the increasing human population coupled with the declining state of the environment including climate change, forest communities have been faced with few livelihood options, leading them to opt for illegal logging, and conversion of forests to cropland and settlements. Before starting any project, it is vital to ensure that the process is community-oriented, with the meaningful participation of all stakeholders. This includes landowners, local communities, marginalized groups, disabled individuals, and the youth. By adopting such an approach, all parties will be actively involved in securing food security and a better livelihood for everyone.To illustrate this, two decades ago, Wildlife Works delivered the world’s first certified Kasigau REDD+ Project which protects over 200,000 hectares of dryland forest for a diverse population of endangered wildlife that also co-exist with humans. The successful model in Taita Taveta County offers a market-based solution that embeds community development into wildlife conservation. So far, the project has enabled about 100,000 people to access clean water, 30,000 students to access education through scholarships, and employment to over 400 people. Accelerating the transition to carbon neutrality and creating resilient economies and sustainable landscapes can be achieved by enabling both indigenous and local people to be at the forefront of protecting forests.

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29 more agrees trigger contact with the recipient

  • Grace Njeri

    33 m

    Adopting a holistic approach to sustainably manage our forests is key to effectively combating climate change

    • Jane Wangui

      1 w

      Protecting our forest is one of the crucial things that should be done so as to ensure that we protect our environment and everything in it.

      • mary Mwihaki

        2 w

        This is so powerful to promote forestry management and combat

        • George Kariuki

          3 w

          Forests are crucial for our planet's health they fight climate change, provide resources, and support biodiversity. The Kasigau REDD+ Project shows it works! This successful model protects forests, provides clean water & education, and creates jobs.

          • Boniface Kuria

            3 w

            @george_kariuki This project has really had an impact on the communities while also conserving our forests. A win win situation.

          • Rashid Kamau

            3 w

            Forest conservation advocacy is a powerful force that strives to promote forestry management and champion equitable solutions.

            • walter lungayi

              3 w

              Great idea!! By involving local communities in conservation and restoration initiatives, we can harness their knowledge and commitment to protect forests and combat the effects of climate change effectively.

              • Rashid Kamau

                3 w

                @walter_lungayi Their participation promotes sustainable and community-driven conservation practices.

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