Grassroot communities need the support with resources, and energy to solve climate change, other environmental issues and take care for the mother earth.
Dr Roselid Nkirote, the executive director of the African Coalition of Communities Responsive to Climate Change (ACCRCC) noted the Earth Day 2023 raises the consciousness to take action that could save the only planet mankind has.
Dr Nkirote urged grassroots communities in the east and horn of Africa to embark on massive tree planting exercises at this time when the region is experiencing rainfall in bid to restore degraded lands.
She noted that the region could take advantage of the ongoing rainfall to safeguard against the debilitating effects of drought experienced over the last two years.
“Let me use this Earth Day 2023 to urge our communities to take advantage of the rains to rejuvenate badly damaged landscape. We are just coming from very serious drought that negatively impacted livelihoods,” she said.
She lauded several climate actions undertaken by the governments in the East and Horn of Africa. In Kenya for example, the government has launched a campaign to plant 15 billion trees over the next year while Uganda is in the process of decentralizing climate actions to the local authorities.
In Tanzania, the government plans to massively invest technology to improve water harvesting in bid to mitigate the effect of climate change.
The drought affected mostly areas inhabited by the pastoralists, areas that naturally receive below-average rains and poor pasture –leading to hundreds of thousands of people to flee their homes in search of water and pasture for their animals.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) warned in its latest report of worse consequences if urgent actions, such as restoration of the earth’s capacity to sequester carbon are not taken to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.
Earth Day is an annual event celebrated on April 22 dedicated to raising awareness about environmental issues and promoting sustainable practices. The first Earth Day was held in 1970 and is now observed in more than 190 countries around the world.
According to the UN, the main purpose of Earth Day is to encourage people to take action to protect the planet and its natural resources.
“This can be achieved through various activities such as planting trees, cleaning up litter, and reducing energy consumption,” notes the UN. Earth Day events are also an opportunity for individuals and organizations to advocate for environmental policies and make a commitment to sustainability.
Earth Day has played an important role in raising public awareness about environmental issues, and has contributed to the establishment of laws and regulations aimed at protecting the environment. It is a reminder that we all have a role to play in preserving the planet for future generations.