Regional News of 2014-07-18

Communities asked to create buffer zones near dams

Mr Asher Nkegbe, Upper East Regional Director of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), has re-echoed the call for adherence to the creation of buffer zones to prevent growing siltation and pollution around rivers and dams.
He said the creation of buffer zones was vital in natural regeneration around rivers and dams, and gave the assurance that his outfit was working in close collaboration with stakeholders in Agriculture and communities to sensitize farming communities to create buffer zones.
Mr Nkegbe made this known in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in Bolgatanga on Wednesday.
He said moves under the sustainable land management programme had started in earnest to support farmer-groups in the Upper East Region to plant shrubs and encourage tree-planting around river banks of the dams, as part of activities to control siltation.
He, therefore, urged stakeholders to guide farmers in that pursuit, listing communities in Bawku West, Bulsa South, Talensi and Binduri Districts, as areas benefiting from the intervention.
The existence of the dams, he said, provides many advantages such as dry season gardening, electricity generation, and enhances vegetable farming throughout the wet and dry seasons.
Mr Nkegbe encouraged farmers to plant improved varieties of nitrogen-fixing legumes, to increase their crop yields and improve soil performance, citing inter-cropping of mucuna as nitrogen-fixing and control of striga.
He added that the Ghana Environmental Management Project (GEMP) of his outfit, had enhanced livelihoods of poor farmers, especially women, as they engaged in income-generating activities, such as soap making, pomade making and shea butter production.
Source: GNA
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