A new project launched to protect miombo woodlands of Western Tanzania
The official launch of the long awaited Miombo woodlands project took place on 23rd April 2013 at Mbola village Tabora Region, Western Tanzania. The colorful event was officiated by the Regional Administrative Secretary Ms. Kudra Mwinyimvua on behalf of the Regional Commissioner for Tabora Hon. Fatma Mwasa and Mr. Titus Osundina, Deputy Country Director of UNDP on behalf of Mr. Alberic Kacou, Resident Coordinator and UNDP Representative.
Present at the occasion were the Regional Administrative Secretary of Katavi on behalf of the RC, Government officials and Technical officers from Regional Administrative Secretary offices of Tabora and Katavi, Councillors from Uyui, Urambo/Kaliua and Mlele Districts, Civil Society representatives, media, communities from the project sites.
The project titled Mainstreaming Sustainable Forest Management in the Miombo Woodlands of Western Tanzania is designed to provide the long term solution to the threats affecting biodiversity and livelihoods in the Miombo woodlands area including deforestation and degradation resulting from land clearance and burning for agriculture, saw milling, tobacco processing, charcoal production and effects of climate change.
''Miombo woodlands is our primary source of livelihood in the form of firewood, charcoal, timber, poles and other construction materials. It is also a source of food products, traditional medicines and animal fodder''. explained Yohana Lugeye, a villager of Mbola.
The objective of the project is to enable the Miombo dependent communities to adopt productive practices favorable to biodiversity conservation, reduce carbon emissions from land use change and improve livelihoods. The project will cover an area of 133,400 hectares in 4 wards of Mbola, Usinge, Imalamakoye and Inyonga in Urambo, Uyui and Mlele Districts in Tabora and Katavi Regions. It targets 12,530 households spread over 28 villages .
''We feel so privileged to be among the few regions in Tanzania to be part of this big project. The most important thing to me is that this Project will reduce our current environmental challenges as well as improve food security and the livelihoods of the communities in Tabora and Katavi Regions. I encourage my colleagues in the pilot project areas to fully participate in every aspect with implementing agencies during the life span of the project’’.said Ms Kudra Mwinyimvua, RAS Tabora
The main supporters of the project include UNDP/GEF, Government, tobacco processing companies, training institutions including IRA, NGOs and CBOs. The project will be implemented under the National implementation Modality (NIM). Africare will be responsible for project coordination.
Among strategies that the project will use to address the challenges will be through adopting sustainable-use and management practices for natural resources, promoting livelihood activities that will contribute to economic growth, and Mainstreaming biodiversity conservation into economic planning and development.
However as a symbol of the launch, ten trees were planted in the area of the event by the RAS Tabora, RAS Katavi, UNDP, Tanzania Forest Services(TFS), Vice Presidents Office(VPO), AFRICARE, IRA, DC Urambo and Mlele Districts and Uyui Councillor,
Following the launch, stakeholders will further discuss implementation arrangement of the project to agree on the specific roles of each partner.