Kenya’s forest cover is 7%, reveals study

Kenya’s forest cover is 7%, reveals study

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Kenya: Kenya’s forest cover is higher than previously thought after the Kenya Forestry Service conducted a mapping using the latest technology, remote sensing.

Forestry and Wildlife Minister Noah Wekesa indicated that an accurate figure of the forest cover is 6.6%, not less than two percent as had been previously estimated.

This means the country is more likely to reach 10% forest cover required by the Constitution. Using state-of-the-art GIS and Remote Sensing Laboratory, Kenya Forestry Service and Kenya Forestry Research Institute conducted a survey countrywide.

“The figure of our forest cover was reached using scientific methods and international standards and is an accurate reflection of the situation on the ground. Detailed forest cover mapping and inventory for Mau Forest has also been undertaken,” he said.

The minister spoke while flagging off vehicles received from Japanese Government under Sh1 billion project to support forest protection and utilisation. He urged Kenyans to devote at least 10% of their farm to planting trees, saying this would help the country reach the ten per cent cover.

Under Japanese funding since 2010 in the Forest Preservation Programme, KFS and KEFRI have received technical and financial support to strengthen their capacity to manage Kenya’s forests. Japanese envoy Shigeo Iwatani asked Kenyans to nurture a culture of planting and nurturing trees to benefit from the diverse economic, social and spiritual benefits of forests. The ambassador said Kenya could attain 10% forest cover if people take up the responsibility.

Source: Standard Media