The government and other environmental conservation stakeholders should play an active role in ensuring that policies supporting environmental conservation are implemented to the letter.
Lewa Conservancy Chief programmes and partnerships Officer John Kinoti has said it is one thing to develop a policy and the other to ensure it is fully implemented.
Speaking during this year’s World Environment Day celebrations, Kinoti said, “I would encourage not only the government, but also all organisations that deal with environmental conservation to ensure we implement policies that support environmental conservation to their fullest.”
The conservationist said this could only be done if all the stakeholders find ways that can make it easier for environmental conservation efforts to be articulated.
“The government should also come up with ways of appreciating those in the frontline of environmental conservation,” said Kinoti.
He added: “Government should also look for subsidies and ensure those people that have planted more trees are encouraged more and more so that we don’t just say that we should conserve our environment, but without being seen to be taking action about it.”
Environmental management and conservation cannot not be left to the government alone, but it’s every person’s responsibility.
On the side of Lewa conservancy, Kinoti said they take the environment with the importance it deserves, since it’s the home to everything, including animals and human beings.
“So, we have the responsibility to ensure our environment is clean and this is the reason we are celebrating this day as we sensitise the residents of Manyangalo village, who live inside the conservancy on the role they can play in ensuring the environment is clean,” said Kinoti.
The conservancy’s Conservation Education Coordinator Ephantus Mugo said it was not possible to separate a safe environment and healthy life.
To mark the day, the conservancy staff, members of Manyangalo village as well as pupils from Lewa primary school participated in the cleaning of the environment by collecting plastic materials within the conservancy.
“Each of us has a responsibility to ensure we have a clean environment to ensure there is posterity and everyone can live a healthy life. This is what we were trying to inculcate to the participants including the young children so that they can grow knowing the importance of having a clean environment,” said Mugo.
He added that some of the diseases that many people are facing today can be eliminated if everyone takes part in ensuring they are living in a clean environment.
This year’s theme was, Solution to plastic pollution and to ensure that Kenyans live up to this, Mugo called on the government to fully enforce the 2017 law against plastic bags to ensure we have a safe environment.
“Despite having a law in place, plastic bags are slowly creeping back and the government should take war against the menace right at the manufacturer’s doorsteps,” he said.
By Dickson Mwiti