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Let’s mitigate vegetation loss to protect Lake Victoria ecosystem

ALTHOUGH there are national, regional and global efforts to mitigate climate change, its effects are felt everywhere across the world due to increased human and non-human causes.

Human causes include tree felling, environmental destruction, land, water and air pollution, overgrazing and illegal fishing.

These are within our powers to control if we really want to. Environmentalists have been advising us time and again to adhere to best agricultural practices such as engaging in sustainable land management, including tree planting and protection of water sources.

They have also been stressing that if we want nature to care for us we have first to care for it.

This means there is interdependence between human beings and nature without which we will continue being plagued by disasters such as hostile weather conditions that are detrimental to human survival and nature in general.

A new report submitted to the East African Legislative Assembly (Eala) last week highlights one of the effects of climate change–that is a decline in forest cover, which ultimately results in desertification.

Eala’s report calls for remedial measures to address factors that put the sustainability of Lake Victoria Basin at risk.

The aim is to increase fish stocks and speed up tree planting, which targets 20 million trees annually. If remedial measures are not taken, according to the Eala report, Lake Victoria risks extinction in the next 123 years.

As it is often said ‘think globally and act locally’ what is said about the East Africa Community (EAC) region is also said about Tanzania and that is why we want to remind one another the obligation we have to protect and conserve the environment by developing a tree planting culture and engaging in best agricultural practices and protecting water sources to make Lake Victoria ecosystem sustainable for present and future generations.

Tree planting is necessary if we want to re-green the environment by restoring vegetation where it is deteriorating.

Trees can be planted along main roads, at schools, health facilities and households. If we were able to stop the production, supply and use of carrier plastic bags and now produce the environmentally-friendly ones as alternatives, we can also plant trees and engage in other environmental conservation and protection initiatives to conserve and protect the environment.

There are many things we can do if more people are aware of the effects of climate change because we believe any sustainable change must start with and come from us.

So, let’s do something about the loss of forest cover facing the EAC region, including Tanzania, by engaging in sustainable tree planting.

Mwandishi: EDITOR

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