Speaking to reporters in Dar es Salaam on his first visit to the country, UN Environment Programme (UNEP), Executive Director, Erik Solheim said that UNEP is the leading global environment authority that sets the global environment agenda.
“The discovering of gas reserved in Tanzania should be use as stepping stone to employment, business opportunity and as a tool to alleviate poverty,” he noted.
He commended that the efforts taken by the government through local municipalities for setting an area in the outskirt of city center Pugu Dampo as a permanently place for cabbage without destructing the environment of the Dar es Salaam city.
Solheim added that the UN environment works with a wide range of partners, including United Nations entities, international organizations, national governments, non-governmental organizations, the private sector and civil society.
He added hope that “other leaders will be inspired to pick up the baton and ensure that Africa’s rich natural resources can be conserved, and thus serve as the foundation for a sustainable future and food security for all on the continent.”
He said that the government should also adding some efforts in banning the uses of plastics bags as the magnitude of it increases the environmental degradation that pose a huge threat to the country’s social and economic development.
“We also hailed efforts taken by the high commissioners here in Tanzania such as China and former two former Presidents Hon. Mwinyi and Hon. Mkapa for participating in the recently anti-poaching marching,” he stressed.
On her part, UNEP, National Coordination Officer, Ms Clara Makenya said that the visit of the UNEP boss emphasized much on the reduction of uses of charcoal for cooking as the cultural fuel the cutting of trees across the country.
“We had an opportunity to meet civil society, NGOs and academicians on the pressing issues of climate change and food security as a scorching agenda in many years to come,” she added.
UNEP, boss has been following with keen interest and commends the efforts by the President of the United Republic of Tanzania, Dr John Magufuli in the fight of corruption and bring about to an end of poaching and the illegal wildlife trade.
UN environment views the shift to Dodoma as an opportunity to bring about positive change and development not just to the central part of Tanzania, but also the whole country. The sustainability of this anticipated growth can be reinforced with the integration of environmental consideration.
In cooperation with partners, UNEP supports cities across the world in addressing environment impacts and integrating the environment into the long term strategic planning. It has been the case with the programs that UN environment has had in the country, such as the poverty and environment initiative.
Africa Environment Day, marked annually on 3 March, focuses on last year on ‘Combating Desertification in Africa: Enhancing Agriculture and Food Security.’
The continent has lost 65 per cent of its agricultural land since 1950 due to land degradation, according to figures cited by UNEP. Up to 12 per cent of its agricultural gross domestic product (GDP) is lost due to deteriorating conditions and 135 million people are at risk of having to move from their land by 2020 due to desertification.
United Nations Environment Programme, Executive Director, Erik Solheim (right) speaks to reporters at the news conference held in Dar es Salaam on his official visit to Tanzania on Global environmental agenda, on his right, UN Resident Coordinator, Alvaro Rodriguez.
United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), National Coordination Officer, Ms Clara Makenya (right) when she stressed a point to reporters during the press conference held in Dar es Salaam on the official visit to UN Environment Head Erik Solheim to Tanzania. Second left is UNEP, Executive Director, Erik Solheim, far left, UN Resident Coordinator, Alvaro Rodriguez.
TANZANIA should adapt recycling waste policy, increasing uses of gas instead of charcoal for cooking as a long term solution on ensuring sustainable environmental protection to tape the pressing challenge of climate change.