Climate Change Governance Project Impact story

For many years, communities within the Western region have valued the Eucalyptus tree because of its economic benefits, including selling it for timber, fuel, and construction. The tree is preferred because of its fast maturity rate. Unfortunately, the side effects of these trees have been greatly overlooked and their impact is evident due to reduced agricultural productivity, and consuming a high volume of water which leads to the drying up of water sources. ADS Western has been at the forefront of championing climate change adaptation, mitigation, and resilience through sensitization and training of communities within 25 wards of Vihiga County in partnership with Christian Aid, ADA Consortium, and the County Government of Vihiga.

Ward Climate Change planning committees were established and trained on the importance of environmental conservation and the consequences of environmental degradation. After the training, the committee members of Mwibona Ward were able to do an assessment of the effects of Eucalyptus within their ward and confirmed its negative impact on water resources. Their findings were that a spring with Eucalyptus planted on its banks has reduced its water volume over time while a spring planted with bamboo around its banks has sustained its water volume and improved water quality.

It’s because of such findings that the committee members are advocating the importance of conserving water sources by planting more bamboo trees along the banks and allocating designated areas away from the water sources to plant the Eucalyptus. The Ward climate change committee members of Mwibona are using bamboo trees to make briquette, as a clean source of fuel that emits low carbon thus reducing greenhouse gas emissions to the atmosphere.

The committee intends to create awareness of the use of clean energy in order to get the market for the briquettes while producing bamboo on large scale to be used to make furniture thus creating job opportunities and earning income from the sale of the bamboo products.

Furthermore, the Ward Climate Change Committees having undergone training on Proposal writing were able to develop fundable proposals which were vetted by County Climate Change committee members resulting in funding and installation of the Ipali Solar-powered water project which is benefiting 50 households and serving the hospital in West Bunyore.

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