Wetlands and climate change emissions

Current Articles | Search | Syndication
Add to iGoogle or Google Reader

Shocking decision of Kenya to convert precious wetland

25-Jun-2008

25-06-2008 Press release
Wetlands International is shocked by the decision of the Kenyan government to convert large tracts of the Tana wetlands in Kenya into sugarcane-for-ethanol plantations. This dramatic development confirms the NGO’s recent outlook ‘Biofuels in Africa’, which shows that biofuel production in Africa will lead to loss of wetlands and rainforest.

Therefore, Wetlands International calls upon the Kenyan government to revise its decision to favour sugarcane for ethanol to wetlands conservation. This area is in need of protection, because it is crucial to many animal species like lions, hippos and waterbirds, as well as the livelihoods of local communities.

Crucial link for migratory birds
Furthermore, Tana wetlands form a crucial link for many migratory waterbirds on the route to their winter destinations in the South. These birds are coming from Europe, such as the Curlew Sandpiper (Calidris Ferruginea) and the little stint (Calidris Minuta).

Local livelihoods
Moreover, thousands of people depend on the Tana wetlands as fishermen or farmers. Herdsmen also require the area for cattle grazing during the dry season. These functions – critical to their livelihoods - will largely disappear if the wetland is converted into a large-scale sugarcane production area.

Trend biofuel production in Africa
Wetlands International presented its report ‘Biofuels in Africa’ at the Convention on Biological Diversity in Bonn, May 2008, With an outlook for 2020, this report reveals how especially pristine wetland areas will become victim of large scale biofuel plantations, such as sugarcane and palm oil.

Sugarcane production demands millions of litres of water for every hectare; ethanol production is only feasible and profitable when thousands of hectares can be established around a mill. Both conditions are met hardly anywhere, except in wetlands, especially floodplains.

The report also indicates that biofuel production offers few opportunities to local African smallholders. As a result, rural people are easily marginalised when large scale biofuel plantations are established.

Similar cases also occur in South Benin and in the Mawi Basin, Tanzania.


For more information.
Alex Kaat
Alex.kaat@wetlands.org
+31 (0)6 50601917
www.wetlands.org

News from our offices

Latin America & the Caribbean News   Océanos: explora, aprende y protégelos

Latin America & the Caribbean News   Océanos: explora, aprende y protégelos

Latin America & the Caribbean News   Mesa de diálogo intersectorial sobre soja y humedales

1 2 3 4 5 6 7

Read more news from our office on Our offices page.

Press contact

Press can contact:

Ms. Ytha Kempkes
Communications and Advocacy Manager
Tel. +31 (0)318 660933
Email: ytha.kempkes@wetlands.org

Press kit

Latest Tweets

TweetId: 504369468731318272 Wetlands Int. WetlandsInt WetlandsInt Thanks for visiting the @PEDRRnetwork event on ecosystem based DRR today @GRFDavos. Learn more: http://t.co/QdNCanxqso #wetlands #IDRC2014 26-08-14 20:47
TweetId: 503872721886126082 Wetlands Int. WetlandsInt WetlandsInt Webinar from FAO: Challenges & Solutions for Responsible Peatlands Management. Enrol now:! http://t.co/Th8YHTQZnx #peatland #climatechange 25-08-14 11:53
TweetId: 503863370060406784 Wetlands Int. WetlandsInt WetlandsInt Cigarettes & campfires may cause #peatland fires- but the ultimate cause of infernos are rooted in altered ecosystems http://t.co/nlhvy9X5BJ 25-08-14 11:16