NEMA in community sensitization drive to protect River Nyagak catchment
The National Environment Management Authority has undertaken the mantle to sensitize the communities living around River Nyagak in a bid to protect the river’s catchment areas.River Nyagak runs through Zombo, Nebbi and Arua Districts in the West Nile region and flows into River Ora that empties its water into River Nile (Albert Nile).
In line with the Ugandan government’s plans for the decentralization and privatization of hydro power systems, the first dam on the river, (Nyagak 1) producing about 3.5 megawatts was constructed. Feasibility studies and EIAs were conducted for Nyagak II and Nyagak III; and construction of the two power stations started in 2015. The dams are expected to be commissioned in 2018.
The main challenges affecting the production of electricity from Nyagak are climate change and degradation of the river catchments. Degradation is manifested through unsustainable human activities such as subsistence agriculture, brick making, cattle grazing without taking into consideration the carrying capacity, sand mining, harvesting of materials for making baskets, roofing materials and wood fuel that lead to siltation.
A number of wetlands including Ayuda, Adida, Amuda, Leda, and Ceda that feed the river are been degraded due to subsistence agriculture.
One of the reasons why there is continued degradation on the banks of River Nyagak and its catchment area is low community awareness and the lack of their participation in the protection of the fragile ecosystem.
Following NEMA’s sensitization campaigns, a number of community members were mobilized and sensitized on ecosystems restoration and environment protection.
Action plans have been developed and agreed upon for implementation; plus the degraded sites were identified for restoration. The district and sub county leadership have been availed with a copy of the report to ensure effective environment management going forward.
Follow link below to access the full report on Public Awareness and Sensitization in regard to the Nyagak catchment area