Natural Resource Management
SANREM studies and analysis has found that East African countries rich in natural resources are witnessing high deforestation rates and loss of their biodiversity due to a number of reasons. These include the search for short-term economic gains and poverty, slash-and-burn practices, excessive commercial logging and clearing of natural habitats for agriculture and urban expansion. Other factors of forestry degradation include timber exploitation, shifting cultivation and urban expansion.
SANREM’s work on natural resources focuses on the following main areas:
- Development, advocacy and public awareness activities that emphasize the importance of biodiversity for agriculture, food security, nutrition, sanitation and rural livelihoods, especially for those populations living in marginal and harsh environments.
- Increasing the ability of local populations to benefit and contribute to natural resource management and conservation.
- Promoting new biotechnology approaches to increasing food production without losing on-farm biodiversity.
- Promoting nature-based sustainable business and income generation business that benefit local communities.
- Focusing on activities that conserve and protect the local environment and helping to alleviate poverty for communities. For example, activities that increase the natural resource base for food security generate income through sustainable use of resources, or that can promote the healthy status of the poor.
- Assisting local communities to develop their own conservation initiatives (e.g. guidelines, training, seed funding, and other incentives).
- Carry out the propagation of medicinal and food plants at local community level through the establishment of nurseries in order to restore local medicinal and food plant biodiversity.
- Identifying priority medicinal and food species that need urgent conservation
- Speaking up to ensure that dry land communities are supported, especially in poverty reducing policies.
- Disseminating information and organizing training to help Community Based Organizations (CBOs) and NGOs deal with the current effects of climate variability, and prepare them for future effects of future climate change.
- Developing and supporting community based projects and initiatives that improve the productivity of local natural resource bases.
- Empowering women and men to ensure a better use of resources by building on their existing knowledge and in adoption of agro-forestry practices on their farms.
What SANREM Works Towards
Working for Forests
Working for Forests would aim to quantify the shortfall in the supply of woodland and natural forest resources and take this into account in its overall development strategy/approach. The SANREM analysis in the region acknowledges the fact that our timber resources in the region is under pressure and make allowance and indicate that within one year of the charter being signed that the department will work together with the industry to implement a saw log growing strategy.
Working for Ecosystems
Working for Ecosystems in the region aims to reverse environmental degradation through ecological restoration and maintenance programmes. It aims to regain natural habitat composition, structure and function and thereby enhance ecosystem services, such as: carbon sequestration, water regulation and purification, reducing the risk of natural disasters by improving landscape/catchment stability and resilience
Working for the Coast
The Working for the Coast Programme was established to help deal with some of the aforementioned challenges in line with the Integrated Coastal Management work of the governments in the region. The programme is informed by the broader Expanded Public Works Pogramme which is using labour intensive methods in its implementation.
Working for Water
This new programme will consider the development of people as an essential element of environmental conservation. Short-term contracts jobs created through the clearing activities are undertaken, with the emphasis on endeavoring to recruit women (the target is 60%), youth (20%) and disabled (5%). Creating an enabling environment for skills training, it is investing in the development of communities wherever it works. Implementing HIV and Aids projects and other socio- development initiatives are important objectives.
Working for Land
Working for Land is an essential programme of the Natural Resource Management Programmes (NRMP). The key objective of the programme is to ensure that degraded ecosystems are restored to their formal or original state wherein they are able to maintain or support the natural species of that system.
Working for Wetlands
Working for Wetlands focus on the rehabilitation, wise use and protection of wetlands in a manner that maximizes employment creation, supports small businesses and transfers relevant and marketable skills to beneficiaries.
Working on Waste
Working on Waste is one of the initiatives that recognizes that inadequate waste services may lead to litter which is not only visual pollution but may lead to health hazards and environmental degradation. in Kenya the devolved county units are facing pressure on solid and liquid waste management and need help in dealing with the matter.
Youth Environmental Services (YES) Programme
Firstly, the Youth Environmental Services (YES) Programme is set to benefit 1 million young people over a period of five years. Upon exiting the programme these young people are set to be trained in environmental management disciplines for application both at local and urban settings. Programme will heavily rely on cooperation with the 47 counties in Kenya and the national government.
Youth Jobs in Waste (YJW) Programme
Secondly, the launch the Youth Jobs in Waste Programme, in June, this project is expected to create 5,000 job opportunities in waste in the 47 counties through waste recycling and waste management value chain business. The project is intended to provide 15,000 young people with job opportunities in waste management and related entrepreneurship.
The Natural Resource Management Programme is seeking to establish 47 Value-added Industry Eco-Furniture micro enterprise centers across the 47 counties in Kenya, in partnership with the ministry of trade and industry in Kenya.
Green Economy for Sustainable Development
Kenya views green economy as a sustainable development path based on addressing the interdependence between economic growth, social protection and natural ecosystem. The SANREM approach is to ensure that green economy programmes are to be supported by practical and implementable action plan therefore importance of building on existing best processes, programmes, initiatives and indigenous knowledge in key sectors “Towards a resource efficient, low carbon and pro-employment growth path”.
The concept of Biomass to Energy is still at its infancy in Kenya but holds promise for the future sustainable development. Biomass is generally regarded as any carbon based material such as animal (including human) waste, plant material, food waste, algae, industrial waste such as reclaimed woody material such as planks, etc. which when processed can produce organic fuels