Protecting forests - local voices
Mabira forest in Uganda receives rainfall that supplies five major rivers, and helps maintain water levels in Lake Victoria and the Nile basin. Recently, the Ugandan government has been hoping to use up to a third of the forest area for sugarcane production, threatening both the environmental services the forest provides as well as the resources it offers to local people. However, the National Forestry Authority, which has been encouraging forest protection and replanting by local communities, has opposed the plan. In Protecting forests - local voices a parish chief and a farmer give their views on the importance of forest protection.
Strengthening the national economy is a high priority for any country. Protecting natural resources is also important. But what happens when these two ambitions clash? Which should take precedence?
Uganda's Mabira forest receives rainfall that feeds into five major rivers, supplying water to Lake Victoria and the Nile basin. For local communities, the forest is a source not only of food and water, but firewood, medicine and other forest products. Recently, however, the government in Uganda has considered allowing part of the forest to be cleared for growing sugarcane. The aim is to make Uganda self-sufficient in sugar, with sufficient surplus to export to European markets.
Uganda's National Forestry Authority, or NFA, has opposed the government's plan. But has the NFA made the right decision? Pius Sawa went to Mabira Forest to meet people living there, and find out their views.
Mariam Nansukusa ending that report from Uganda's Mabira Forest. The report was compiled by Pius Sawa on behalf of WRENmedia.
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