UBOS to blame for environmental degradation
Publish Date: Apr 29, 2014
  • mail
  • img

By George Wamunga

Reading the New Vision story (NEMA powers to be trimmed) has left me wondering how the executive branch agency charged with protection of the environment is now being accused of degradation. I pray that NEMA does not follow NAADS.

If this was the US’s EPA, a disbandment probe committee would now be in the offing. Though the US and company are not committed to Kyoto Protocol (2013-2020), the Australian government is struggling to disband the Climate Change Commission (CCC) for its strong stance on carbon pricing. I am hesitant to recommend a swap of NEMA for the Australian CCC.

However, what underlies all these contradictions is the actual contribution of environmental resources to human welfare. It is not hypothetical for policy makers at various levels to choose their set of actions by accident.

We all appreciate the government desire to increase sugar production at the expense of some parts of Mabira CFR.

Currently, Bududa District is struggling to degazzate the only local forest reserve for sh79m.

Considering our rate of environmental degradation, I would not be too wrong to assert that it is as a result of low value attachment.

I wish to disregard the shallow thinking of adopting environmental education on our school curriculum as a useless and wasteful undertaking for any policy maker at this stage. I can read your minds trying to grasp a simple solution-peasantry approach!

The wide spread formal and informal wetlands degradation throughout the country is failure by stakeholders to know their worthiness.

I, therefore, wish to believe that the inability by UBOS to capture relevant data that forms a basis for decisive, technical and informative aspects has accelerated environment degradation.

For instance, there is no way NEMA can conclusively push for a water purification levy to industrialists polluting Kinawataka wetland without credible statistics.

The current cost of water in Kampala Metropolitan District cannot be rationalised without the inclusion of sewage treatment and water purification functions of wetlands estimated at sh38m/ha/yr and projected at sh87m/ha/yr by 2020.

Yet such costs are neither taxes nor disincentives for water use but private costs to NWSC. It is, therefore, correct to believe that the costs of water do not reflect the cost of production.

Economic instruments are rationalised by statistics and you cannot conserve without knowing the value. Needless to state, environmental indicators can only be generated in a survey not a census as UBOS wants us to believe.

The writer is an environmental policy student at the University of Adelaide, Australia.


The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Celebrating Independence without Gen Aronda
This year has been another long year and a difficult one at that. Difficult in a sense that we have an important election in a couple of months from now, for which we must prepare and ensure a peaceful, free and fair election....
Sustainable development goals achievable with everyone playing a role
Last month, world leaders converged in New York and adopted the 2030 agenda for Sustainable Development including the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)....
A call to protect African arts, culture and heritage for sustainable development
From April 16th till May 6th , 2013 China Federation of Literary Arts Circles (CFLAC), received 17 cultural officials and artists’ representatives from 10 English-speaking African countries, namely Sierra Leone, Zambia, Ghana, Mozambique, Tanzania, Malawi, Ethiopia, Nigeria, Uganda and Egypt...
Strategic impact assessments should not be ignored in oil development
Fear raced through Faith Kiiza’s body when she heard the news that the presidents of Kenya and Uganda had announced that they had agreed on a route for Uganda’s oil export pipeline....
Makerere should negotiate with Parents, Guardians to reduce fees strikes
This week has been horrendous. There has been student unrest at Makerere and Kyambogo Universities respectively. For Makerere, it marks another vehemently ugly tale that has come to keep haunting the University each time important steps are made in her advancement as a premier institution in the co...
Empower the girl child
Uganda will on 11th Oct join the world to commemorate the third ever International day of the girl child. The national celebration premised on the global theme “The power of the adolescent girl, Vision 2030,” is based on one of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that were launched on 25th Sep...
Should Makerere University fees policy be reviewed?
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter