The decision to gazette 70 more water sources across the country could not have come at a better time.
The country is grappling with the grave consequences of massive environmental degradation, manifested in the drying up of rivers, erratic rainfall and prolonged droughts that threaten the very survival of the people.
Water towers, essentially large forest blocks, play the critical role of boosting rainfall and ensuring a balance in atmospheric gases.
The trees absorb the deadly carbon dioxide while producing the life-sustaining oxygen. Conservation of forests not only assures us of a steady supply of clean air and water, but also helps to mitigate the negative effects of climate change.
Over the decades, both the government and people have passively watched as a few greedy fellows engaged in the wanton and ruthless destruction of forests for timber, charcoal and to pave the way for human settlement.
Water towers such as the Mau Forest are now a pale shadow of themselves with the country’s tree cover at only 7.2 per cent, way below the 10 per cent prescribed by the United Nations.
More needs to be done.
The three-month ban on logging, intensified tree planting and a moratorium on charcoal trade by some county governments are crucial, albeit belated, steps in the right direction.