17 June 2017

Ethiopia: Warding Off Developmental Hurdles


According to the climate change mitigation goal Ethiopia set to achieve by 2030 it has jump started to cover 15 million hectares of denuded and farmlands by forest. The goal Ethiopia set is part of the continental goal to cover 100 million hectares of land with forest. Ten of the countries are aiming at covering 31.7 million hectares of degraded lands with green mantles. Ethiopia is one of these countries. The goal will further fuel the country's passion of forest and catchment development, an area in which it has tightened its belt and begun to portray astounding achievements. This will enable the country step up its activities by utilizing its experience, fine tuned with the goal as well as the continental and global support it is being accorded with.

At this precise moment in time, an all out effort is called for to cushion the impacts of climate change. Hence, letting degraded lands resuscitate and promoting forest development are timely tasks. It is known that Ethiopia is doing its level best pertaining to preventing and mitigating climate change. Pertaining to this it is striving to see to the translation of the green-resilient economy it chalked out.

Ethiopia has tasted first-hand the bitter impacts of climate change than any other country. It had gone through the acid test of climate change. Not few are the times beset by hunger many citizens left their abodes. The situation has made Ethiopia synonymous with drought. Farmlands that boast of bumper harvest are suffering the attendant ills of climate change -- Scorching sun and flood.

Before the global community mounted a concerted action to contain the severe impacts of climate change Ethiopia was already on the ball. Chief among the activities Ethiopia mounted are found the physical and biological conservation works and the safety net programme it brought into play in areas where vulnerability to drought is apparent. As a result, farmers were made to develop some asset parallel to resuscitating denuded areas. This task has drawn the attention of the world community.

Following the successful task, waters are gushing out from springs that had long run dry. The landscape is once more boasting of a greenery. Farmers have become beneficiaries of irrigation development, cattle fattening, apiary and fruits. Specially, following the afforestation work it carried out from the dawn of the new millennium its forest coverage has risen from 3 per cent to 11 per cent. When projected the result augurs the country will cover 15 thousand hectares of eroded land with trees by 2030.

As this move is part and parcel of the continental and global move of mitigating climate change, it enjoys the support of the global community. The support is believed to include financial, technical, professional and similar supports. Using the lesson it got and the support being extended to it Ethiopia must press ahead with its task. As the task of covering denuded farming lands with forest takes time, it is good to consider ways to render farmers beneficiaries.

Getting out of the box, focusing on sustainable work than a campaign oriented one must be espoused. Though the forest development of the country cuts a good posture, experts note that the development has some gaps. Even if million of tree seedlings are planted in the country not the necessary protection is accorded to them. Only 60 per cent of them make it to trees. According to experts, the development of the trees also lacks clearly defined purposes. Bridging the development gaps, there is a call for seeing to the attainment of the set goal.


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