Kitui Environment and Forestry Chief Officer David Soi Masai has asked the Government and other organizations to work closely with the county so as to promote environmental conservation.
Masai said that there is increased charcoal burning within Kitui County. However, he revealed that this is due to the increased demand from the outside market.
“If charcoal burned could only be consumed by the people within Kitui County, then the degradation would not be so high. Charcoal burning escalates when the demand from outside markets such as Nairobi increases, “Masai said.
He urged both Government and NGOs to help promote conservation by putting strict measures such as banning charcoal burning.
In 2018, Former Kitui Governor Charity Ngilu imposed a ban on charcoal burning and trade in the county. She also banned commercial sand harvesting in a bid to conserve the environment.
Following the ban, a lorry that had been loaded to capacity with charcoal bags worth Sh 11 million was torched at Kanyoonyoo on the Mwingi– Garissa Highway.
Despite the ban, Masai hints that the trade still exists. This has made the county worse off in terms of forest cover. Last year, the county’s forest cover was at 7.08 percent, as revealed by Meshack Kyalo Muthusi, former County Executive Committee Member of Environment, Forestry, and Natural Resources in a past interview.