Environmentalists Question Lift of Ban on Logging

During the Climate Emergency Day, Environmentalists came out strongly to oppose the lifting of the ban on logging. Citing that with the ban lifted our forests remain endangered as this acts as a new lease of life to hundreds of saw millers locked out of business for five years.

 The move by President William Ruto to lift the moratorium ban on logging on July 2 has raised several criticisms as environmentalists are sharing their opinions about how it will instead increase deforestation yet we are strongly advocating for tree planting. For example, Climate Clock Kenya has strongly discouraged the move by the government to lift the ban on logging.

President Ruto pointed out a need for harvesting the mature trees that would instead be rotting in the forests while mature trees were rotting in the forest while locals who relied on forest produce suffered. The lift of the ban on logging was effected earlier this month after having been in action for the last five years a move that has elicited mixed reactions from environmentalists.

“Mature trees are rotting in forests while locals suffer due to lack of timber, see the foolishness in this Country. We have lifted the moratorium that was put in place,” Ruto said.

According to the East Africa Region lead Environmentalist Pauline Owiti, the move by President Ruto that allowed the loggers to get into cutting trees would accelerate deforestation.

“We call on the government to enact and enforce legislation to protect and restore biodiversity and critical ecosystems like the forests,” she said.

The probability of the move turning out to be appalling was cited by Benson Wemali a gazette inspector of the environment on July 6 when he said the move would do more harm than good as intended.

“Evidenced by the destruction of forests in Elburgon, Molo, Limuru, and other places where the timber industry thrived before the ban, I’ll say the move to lift the ban was reckless and will be destructive,” said the environmentalist.

As Climate Emergency Day was aimed at raising awareness of the urgency of addressing climate change and the need for immediate action, Owiti Pauline and fellow environmentalists remark that though the decision is made in good faith, it would thus negate all the gains made during the ban so far.

“Those who will harvest trees are businesspeople, not environmental experts. We, therefore, call for urgency and recognition of the severity of the climate emergency and demand policymakers and businesses to take responsibility for their role in contributing to it,” said the environmentalist.

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