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For many people, charcoal is the only affordable fuel - gas and electricity is still too expensive. In Nairobi, charcoal ...
is sold openly on the streets and Mount Kenya is a major source of this inexpensive fuel. Charcoal burning is strictly illegal. It diminishes tree cover, increases the risk of fires and disturbs the forest's delicate eco-system. But for many young men, it is the only source of income in a very poor country and the need for cash far outweighs the risk of being caught.
Tags:Damage of Charcoal Production on Mount Kenya,charcoal production on mount kenya,charcoal use in mount kenya,disadvantages of using charcoals on mount kenya,earth report,kenya wildlife service,mount kenya,television for the environment,tve
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Damage Caused by Charcoal Production on Mount Kenya
Correspondent: Charcoal is sold openly on the streets of Nairobi much of it from Mount Kenya for many people charcoal is the only fuel they can afford gas and electricity are too expensive it’s big business worth nearly $50 million a year.
Local: It’s illegal business because the goverement is environmental friendly though if you are arrested and you are charged then give them money, corruption you give the government about one thousand when you have about 100 bags of charcoal-so they take it so you grant them money and it’s over. When it comes to money in Kenya anyone is desperate because he economy can’t allow us and so you have to get the cash whether legal or not. It’s a do or die.
Correspondent: Mt. Kenya is a major source of charcoal; it’s another threat to indigenous trees. Illegally felled trees are smoked in kilns over several days to produce it. A recent survey counted 2,400 charcoals kilns in the area. Not only does this increase the threat of forest fires but it also disturbs the delicate ecosystem. Poles up here in the forest canopy, despite the new ban for felling trees for money young men charcoal production is a source of income.
We were taken by a group of men who use to be charcoal burners several years ago to a site deep in the forest.
Local: Even to come in the forest that is trespass.
Local: Because we’re jobless, we don’t have anything to do we’re jobless the servants are very small yet we don’t have other countries so we risk our life instead of stealing or staying idle.
Local: You will be bitten seriously the forest they can beat you until you have— yeah. When you are sent to the policy guard with the forestry there you are clear about the night or who when they can release you or they can take you to the police about 6 months or 12 at high.
Ranger: There has to be some alternative for your found for the resident that live and all the residents of Kenya as a whole and here the tropical burning on mount Kenya isn’t just for the local community it’s commercial.
Christian Lambrects (United Nations Environment Programme): Our forest like Jubilee many other forests are being faced with this very busy challenge is how to balance short term benefits in particular from extracting some specific forest produce with long term benefits which are micro climates regulation and water catch protection soil erosion for protection of reservoir for biodiversity.
Correspondent: The allocation of forest land for farming has also created major problems. Kenya is mainly a rural economy and people are desperate to farm on a fertile land around the forest but this means conflict between farmers and wildlife such as elephants that roam around the forest reserve. Often they end up on nearby farms eating the crops. Gerald Ngatia is a local farmer whose farm is frequently invaded by elephants.
Gerald Ngatia (Farmer): This are the elephants footprints where they have been passing along especially when we came about one week back and destroyed all the bananas that were there and all the sugar cane that was there. The maize crop that was here was destroyed one night by a team of about 4 to 5 elephants and we had to repeat the whole project all over again and that’s why we see that they have been doing out back economically and also reducing the moral of the growth of this.
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