Civil Societies in Turkana County under the auspices of the Pan African Climate Justice Alliance have submitted a raft of recommendations to the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources aimed at helping the local community to cope with the effects of climate change.
During the roundtable meeting that was organized by PACJA, the CSOs recommended that the county government designate an area for herding, adding that there was a need for a holistic approach to pasture management. They further urged that the county government introduces the practice of growing fodder in the county to boost their ability to feed their cattle.
They urged the county government to gazette more forest areas such as Lochoko to increase forest reserves and called for a tree planting component to be included in the county integrated development plan.
The local CSOs further called for the improvement of cooking stoves to make them more efficient thus reducing the felling of trees for firewood, adding that the initiative should be extended to the refugee camps as they too contribute to the felling of trees for firewood in the country.
The members noted the there was a need for the county government to control wetlands, water catchment areas and unsustainable tapping of water by small-scale farmers along River Turkwel.
On pollution, the CSOs noted that the county government would be required to ensure that Tullow Oil disposes of its waste safely so as not to affect the people and livestock in the surroundings.
They called on the county government to develop the county climate change policy and fast track the implementation of policies and Bills that have been put in place to safeguard the environment.
Saying that capacity building was important, the local civil society organisations urged the county government to conduct training through public platforms to teach the community about the importance of conserving their environment. They further called for the re-introduction of 4K clubs in schools to introduce the younger generation to issues of environmental management early.
The noted that the greening programme should be undertaken by all county departments and the communities, adding that there was a need to monitor the tree nurseries to ensure the growth of tree cover.
The members recommended that the county set up a climate change fund to help in mitigation actions, adding that the county should prioritize issues to do with the environment during the budget process.
They highlighted the need for research in generating evidence on best practices in environmental conservation, adding that the county government should support community activities by providing resources and working with other partners to ensure the success of projects.
The meeting that took place on Thursday, November 16, 2017, was attended by 12 CSOs working within Turkana County.
The roundtable meeting was organized under the project “Improving Civil Society Engagements in Mainstreaming Climate Change at National and county level sectoral policies and programmes” that is currently being implemented by the Pan African Climate Justice Alliance in Baringo and Turkana.
To realize its objectives, PACJA is working in collaboration with relevant government ministries including the ministry of Environment & Natural Resources, Ministry of Water, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Energy and Private sector, as well as other civil society organisations both at the national and county level.