Conflict in Resource User and Environment

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FACULTY OF ARTS
DEPARTMENT OF GEOGRAPHY AND ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES
COURSE TITLE; CONFLICT IN RESOURCE USER AND ENVIRONMENT

TASK Limiting you responses to either Lake Naivasha or upper Ewaso Nyiro north catchment discuss how that the water act 2002 has been deterrent instrument for conflict in using natural resources.

INTRODUCTION

Ewaso Ngiro North Catchment Area (ENNCA) covers an area of 210 226 km2 (about 36% of Kenya. More than 70% of the catchment is semi‐arid; Mean annual rainfall ranges from over 800 mm in the highlands to less than 400 mm in the ASAL areas; ENNCA, a water scarce catchment with a per capita water availability of 274 m3/yr; In the drier parts of ENNCA, pastoralism prevails whereas agricultural activities are concentrated in high rainfall areas around Kenya and Aberdares ranges. ENNCA is composed of 5

Sub‐regions namely:
– Upper Ewaso Ngiro –Nanyuki
– Middle Ewaso Ngiro –Isiolo
– North Ewaso Laggas –Marsabit
– Engare Narok Melghis-Rumuruti
– Ewaso Daua ‐ Madera
The high plateau of the Upper Ewaso Ngiro North Basin in Kenya and the mountain foot zones referred to as the “White Highlands” during the colonial period consisted of ranches and large farms. After independence in 1964, the basin experienced changes in land use as land was subdivided into smaller plots for agro pastoralists as people resettled from overpopulated foot zone areas. As a result, growth points such as towns and densely populated small scale farms as well as with large scale technical horticulture farms have been formed in the mountain foot zones while game parks and tourist resort centres occupy the dry lowlands of the basin. The population increased from 50,000 in 1960 to 500,000 in 2000 and has put demand for water resources under pressure (Kiteme and Gikonyo 2002). As more land is being converted to irrigate land to grow crops mainly for international markets, farmers now place their water intakes high up on the mountain in the tributaries of Ewaso Ng’iro river. At the same time, pastoralists and small scale farmers are establishing small scale irrigation schemes (Wiesmann et al. 2000). These developments affect communities, wildlife and the ecology downstream of the basin as water becomes scarcer. For instance, 98 abstraction points within a 30 km river reach, provide water to about 30,000 people. About 97% of this abstracted water is being used to irrigate only 9% of the total basin area (Aeschbacher et al. 2005), and thus greatly contributing to water shortages downstream and hence conflicts. Inadequate water resources management and a general decline in rainfall have aggravated water scarcity problems in the Upper Ewaso Ng’iro North Basin in Kenya. Furthermore, water use conflicts in the basin have escalated in recent decades due to increased competition for available water resources. Excessive abstraction of the declining river water mainly for irrigation in the Mount Kenya and Nyandarua foot zones often leads to reduced water flow during the dry seasons, greatly affecting downstream water users. Increased water use in the basin coupled with deterioration of the vegetative cover has resulted in reduced water flows in the Ewaso Ngiro River and its major tributaries. In addition, lack of sufficient knowledge about available water resources and current lack of coordination in water resources management in the basin often result in water deficits which have hampered development in the downstream catchment. The goal of this study was to match the water requirements of various competing sectors in the basin with the available water resources in order to attain both economic and ecological sustainability. The Upper Ewaso Ngiro North Basin has a high economic status in the country due to its intensified agriculture, forestry and game reserves attracting tourists from all over the world. It offers a great deal of beautiful scenery. Therefore, careful Management and negotiation...
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