President Ruto has recently announced the lifting of a 6-year long logging ban, allowing Kenyans to cut down trees for lumber sparking both praise and concern among citizens and environmentalists.
• President Ruto has recently lifted the 6 year long logging ban put in place by Former President Uhuru Kenyatta allowing loggers to cut down trees.
• Members of the logging industry rejoice due to the return of their livelihoods & this move seems to combat youth unemployment.
• Environmentalists argue that this ban lift may have consequences seeing that the forests of Kenya help maintain a steady ecosystem and combat climate change.
The decision to allow loggers to resume their operations aims to address the economic hardships faced by many in the timber industry. Environmentalists however, argue that this move exposes Kenya to climatic impacts and threatens the fragile ecological balance and sustainability provided by the forests in Kenya.
Economic View Point
The logging industry has for years been a source of income for many Kenyans, especially those in rural areas where alternative employment opportunities are limited.
The ban on logging, initially imposed by Ruto’s predecessor, Former President Uhuru Kenyatta, was put in place to reverse the frequent deforestation and illegal logging. This ban put a strain on the livelihoods of loggers and their families.
“This is why we have decided to open up the forests and harvest timber so that we can create jobs for our youth and open up business while we continue with our previous plan to plant 15 billion trees in 10 years,” said Ruto in Nakuru county.
Unemployment and poverty have been persistent issues in Kenya, and the logging ban is expected to at least lessen these challenges for communities dependent on the timber industry.
By allowing logging operations to resume, President Ruto aims to stimulate economic growth and reduce poverty levels, particularly in rural areas.
While this lifting of the logging ban may provide some relief for loggers, it has raised concerns among environmentalists and conservationists.
The environmentalists argue that rampant deforestation has its consequences, including the loss of bio-diversity, soil erosion, disruption of water cycles and the much dreaded climate change.
Our forests play an important role in regulating the climate, preserving water resources, and providing habitats for countless species. Conservationists argue that uncontrolled logging may lead to irreversible damage to these ecosystems.
Although President Ruto argues that his plan to plant 15 billion trees is still in place, the balance between economic needs and preserving of the environment will need deep monitoring and regulations will have to be put in place.
What do you think? Does one aspect outweigh the other? Furthermore, will it be possible to maintain the balance between the two. That remains to be seen.