Nakuru County to establish body to conserve three major lakes following cases of degradation

Nakuru County to establish body to conserve three major lakes following cases of degradation.[Harun Wathari, Standard]
Nakuru County government will establish an independent body to manage three major Lakes following increased cases of pollution resulting to massive degradation.

The body is expected to provide expertise in the conservation of the critical water resources including Lake Nakuru, Naivasha and Elementaita.

Speaking during a visit to Lake Nakuru with the Sanitation Technical Assistance Mission team from World Bank, County director of Water and Irrigation Engineer Johnson Kamau they are currently partnering with World Bank in charting a roadmap to the renewal of the lakes.

“The County government will be working with the team from World Bank who will be offering technical assistance through innovative Water Supply, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) approaches,” Eng Kamau said.

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He said the team will come up with mitigation measures after accessing the state of sanitation in some facilities and sharing reports on the same.

According to Lewnida Sara, a sanitation specialist from the World Bank, the team will be assessing the situation of the facilities while offering technical support.

“Currently, the World Bank has no financial commitment at the moment but we are first assessing the situation of the facilities, come up with reports on the same and explore on necessary mitigation measures,” Ms Lewnida said.

Increased cases of pollution and channeling of pesticides from farming activities, according to Eng Kamau has greatly contributed to the degradation of major lakes in Nakuru.

The existence of these two lakes, in very proximity to towns with huge and growing populations, he added is a threat to the delicate ecosystem.

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 “Increased cases of pollution emanating from industrial waste, runoffs, raw sewage and agricultural waste has adverse effects especially in Lake Nakuru. This has affected the visibility as well as affecting the aquatic life,” Eng Kamau said.

According to the Nakuru National Park senior warden Samuel Tokore, finding viable and lasting solutions towards controlling the waste from outside from entering in to the lake will help solve the challenges currently being faced.

“Finding solutions of controlling the junk of waste being washed in to the lake through River Njoro which drains  in to the lake will greatly solve the challenges  facing aquatic life and the entire ecosystem,’ Mr Tokore said.

In a speech Nakuru County Governor Lee kinyanjui noted that there is increase in cases of environmental degradation facing both Lake Nakuru and Naivasha, a situation which he said needs urgent interventions.

Most challenges facing the lakes within the County, he said, are as a result of pressure from human activities resulting in increased pollution.

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“The increase in farming activities and use of pesticides is a direct threat to the delicate environmental ecosystem. It poses a major threat to the fishing industry that supports thousands economically and feeds many far and beyond,” Governor Lee said.

The lakes, he noted, provide a critical lifeline to the residents and visitors who frequent them.

“Lake Naivasha in particular, is a key source of water for irrigating the flower industry, a leading employer through the fishing activities and also home to the finest hotels in the region. Over 45 percent of the town economy emanates directly from the Lake resource,” Governor Lee said.

He added that the County government is working with stakeholders to ensure business and human practices conducted in and around the lake are environmentally sound. 

He added that the County is seeking development partners and private investors to fund the expansion of the sewer system in Naivasha and Nakuru.

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“We are also considering the establishment of an independent body to manage the two critical lakes. This body would provide the necessary expertise and mobilize resources for the conservation,” he added.

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