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Book chapter Book chapter Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Planning arid lands development in Africa: some reflections from the ringside
Author:Darkoh, M.B.K.ISNI
Book title:Security in African drylands: research, development and policy
Geographic term:Kenya
soil management
Abstract:The author has most recently been involved in the preparation of an environmental action plan for the development of Kenya's ASAL (arid and semi-arid lands). This paper is based on the observations he made there. He argues that four important lessons can be drawn from the experience in Kenya: conservation schemes that do not place the welfare of people at the centre of attention are doomed to failure; environmental conservation in arid lands cannot be divorced from development and production; any approach to environmental conservation should address both short-term immediately demonstrable benefits as well as long-term benefits; conservation projects must demonstrate results which improve upon the traditional survival strategies to reduce risks if they are to stand any chance of success in dryland environments. A case study of efforts undertaken to sedentarize the Turkana of Kenya shows that well-meant development actions on the part of the government and donor agencies are contributing to worsening environmental and human conditions in the ASAL. The question of the potentials that exist in drylands as building blocks for sustainable environmental conservation is taken up in a case study of the traditional forestry management practices of the Turkana. In conclusion, suggestions for further research are presented. Bibliogr., notes, ref.