Case 24 - Kakamega Forest Ecosystem Management, Kakamega County, Kenya
|Please read the OpenNESS case study booklet 'Ecosystem services in operation' for the final outcomes of the cases. More detailed information about the cases and the tools and methods used can be found on Oppla: www.oppla.eu|
Kakamega Forest Ecosystem is located in the western region of Kenya, near Lake Victoria. It covers an area of about 230 km2; less than half of this area is fragmented forests, interspersed with clearings and glades and human settlements. It is a biodiversity hotspot for both flora and fauna, including a variety of medicinal plants and endemics snakes; it is also a designated Important Bird Area (IBA).
Local inhabitants are highly dependent on its ecosystem services, e.g. fuelwood, fodder and pasture for livestock, timber, medicinal herbs, and honey production. Most households (>60%) derive their incomes from agriculture, especially from tea, sugarcane and coffee. Maize, beans and bananas are also important staple food crops.
Kakamega Forest Ecosystem Strategic Plan was recently developed and proposed following a series of participatory stakeholder consultations and workshops.
The main aim is to conserve and enhance the unique biodiversity of the forest, and improve the livelihoods of the forest adjacent communities through sustainable management and utilisation of ES/NC.
OpenNESS researchers will work hand in hand with Kakamega Forest Ecosystem Management team- in Case Study Advisory Board (CAB) and wider stakeholder forums to mainstream the ES/NC concept at multiple levels (land-use and landscape). Specifically, the key issues to be addressed by OpenNESS team will include:
- Mapping and valuation of ES/NC.
- Assessing the impact of Regulatory Frameworks (EU, National & Local) on Case Study flagship export commodity (i.e. tea) to the EU.
- Examining governance mechanisms (national and local) and their effects on management of ES/NC.
The case Study Leader is Dr David Odee from the Kenya Forestry Research Institute, Nairobi, Kenya. His team will work together with Kenya Forest Service, Kenya Wildlife Service, and CAB representing a wide range of stakeholders.