Uganda: Develop Strategy to Manage Climate

16 04 2009

Kampala — Since 1992, international climate diplomacy has resolved to reduce green house gases which cause global warming. While these emissions fell by 5% between 1990 and 2006, they have risen by 2.3% in the past two years according to a recent report, UN framework convention on climate change.

The main reason for the rise in emissons is the fast growth in emerging markets and depletion of primary forests mostly by the industrialised nations.

In the struggle, the industrialised have been handed an opportunity to invest in the south in projects that reduce emissions. Some of the projects include planting large tree plantations or growing of crops extensively to produce biofuels that can be used instead of oil. However, such projects have social and environmental injustices in a sense that they leave many landless, compete for land with food production and reclaim more forests.

For instance in 1994, the Forest Absorbing Carbon Emissions, a Dutch organisation, signed an agreement with the Government to plant trees on Mt. Elgon. The project was carried out in collaboration with the Uganda Wildlife Authority. They grew trees on the 25,000 hectares of land where encroachment had occurred.

As the project extended to Buwabwala sub-county, Manafwa district, it left the natives landless, with no compensation despite having land titles. Therefore, the new world intervention into the climate change scenario which Uganda should be cautious of, is the growing of crops such as sugarcane, palm oil and maize.

Other crops include soya beans, sunflower and jatropha to produce biofuels to replace fossil fuels that are primary polluters.

However, in the course of determining the best climate solution, a systematic strategy has to be developed by all environment stakeholders.

Source: All Africa


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