Thursday, April 18, 2024

Forestry Institute of Zambia Calls for Action Amidst Anticipated Energy Deficit


As Zambia grapples with unusual weather patterns this year, the Forestry Institute of Zambia has sounded the alarm on the potential environmental repercussions of an anticipated energy deficit. The Institute warns that the expected shortfall in power generation and electricity supply could lead to increased reliance on wood fuels, exacerbating forest degradation and deforestation across the country.

Energy plays a crucial role in the daily lives of Zambians and people worldwide. However, the current weather conditions are projected to impact power generation, prompting concerns about a surge in demand for firewood and charcoal, particularly in rural and urban areas. This heightened demand poses a significant threat to Zambia’s forests, leading to ecological disturbances and environmental degradation.

Despite these challenges, there exists an opportunity to promote awareness and adoption of alternative energy sources such as liquefied petroleum gas, solar energy, and wind energy. The Forestry Institute emphasizes the importance of collaborative efforts among stakeholders to advocate for the widespread adoption of sustainable energy solutions.

In light of the potential for load shedding, citizens are urged to prepare accordingly. Additionally, the Institute calls upon relevant authorities to implement proactive measures to mitigate the impact of the energy deficit on the nation’s energy sector.

Addressing the looming threat of increased demand for charcoal and firewood, the Forestry Institute urges the government, through the Forestry Department in the Ministry of Green Economy and Environment, to strengthen operations at checkpoints. Only products accompanied by proper documentation, including production and conveyancing licenses, should be allowed for sale. Those found engaging in illegal activities must face prosecution.

Chaliafya Katungula, Secretary-General of the Forestry Institute of Zambia, emphasized the importance of collective action and responsible stewardship in addressing the environmental challenges associated with the anticipated energy deficit. By working together and prioritizing sustainable energy solutions, Zambia can mitigate the adverse effects on its forests and safeguard the environment for future generations.

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