FORUM FOCUS 1511 - page 8

Water is a finite resource which
is fundamental to life. It has no
viable substitute. However, lat-
est trends show that water re-
sourcesmanagement throughout
the country reflects theuncertain
future of natural water supplies.
Longer drought spells should
mean that communities make
a concerted effort in managing
available water resources and,
use reserves harvested during
rain seasons when rivers run
low; this unfortunately is not the
case.
Rivers dryingup
During the months of July-Au-
gust 2015, LWF reported that
a majority of perennial rivers
flowing in and out of Laikipia,
including; Ontulili, Nanyuki,
Naromoru, Upper Ewaso Nyiro,
Mutara, Suguroi, and Pesi, were
drying up exceptionally fast, ir-
respective of this being a dry
season. The river sources from
Mount Kenya and Abardares
Ranges experienced reduced
flow due to over abstraction by
residents in order tomeet an ex-
tremely high demand of water
for domestic and irrigation use.
Ifwaterwasharvestedandstored
during rain seasons, communi-
ties would see reduced cases of
illegal abstractions and wastage
of water during the dry seasons.
There is also unaccountedwater
loss from natural water sources
to residential areas, fromnumer-
ous leakages on roads and ille-
gal connections. Inefficient use
of water, such as flood irrigation
through furrows also reduces ac-
cess towater during dry spells.
Furthermore; Laikipia, Sam-
buru and Isiolo Counties utilise
multiple shared river andground
water aquifers that result in an
interdependent relationship that
could either foster cooperation
or exacerbate conflict, which
should be a strong incentive
to ensure the success of water
management through improved
transboundary governance and
cooperation.
There isaneed toupscaleendog-
enous conservation initiatives in
the region through the progres-
sive work of Water Resources
Users Associations (WRUAs)
and Community Foresestry As-
sociations (CFA’s
Cause forconcern
Laikipia’sdrying rivers
Article by JamesMwangi
Upcoming events
inNovember
Local communities and wildlife have a right to live in the beautiful land-
s
cape that is Laikipia, and, the welfare of both must, and can be protected
– through fences. Tomany, fences are synonymouswith segregation and separa-
tion. But we believe that fences can be used for good.
Here in Laikipia, fences don’t offend, they defend. Instead of conflict, they
provide coexistence.Rather than strife, man and animal are shielded from one
another - farmers get to protect their crops, and wildlife are protected from
human interference.
Mending fences is based on real life stories, and settings, surrounding fences
of Laikipia andhow they play a fundamental role for both residents andwildlife.
Mending fences is also about how, in Laikipia, good fences bring good neighbors
together, and elephants and other wildlife benefit.
Mending Fences
Suguroi river, at theNanyuki-Rumuruti bridge, on13thOctober 2015
Consevation efforts
WRUAs have struggled to attain finan-
cial sustainability despite their great
effort and commitment in managing
transboundary water sources. They im-
plementwater rationingprogramsduring
the dry seasons, protect water sourc-
es and resolve water conflictsbetween
downstream and upstreamwater users.
The County governments have worked
and continue to play a part in promot-
ingWRUAs. It is encouraged that these
same governments should begin to val-
ue theWRUA’s efforts and allocate re-
sources to support the development of
these institutions.
Tree plantingLaunch
Nanyuki primarySchool
November6th
TownClean up
ByVSO
CountyGovernment of Laikipia
November15th
Laikipia’sClimate
ChangeWalk
November29th
GreatGrevy’sRally
Laikipia,Masabit Isiolo and
Samburu
Coming soon
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CountyTimesMediaGroup,
P.O. Box935 - 10400Nanyuki,
Kenya
LaikipiaWildlifeForum
P.O. Box764,Nanyuki
Tel: +254 - 202466626
Mobile: 072650026
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