By: Goth Mohamed Goth
Hargeisa (THT) The Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources in conjunction with the Ministries of Environment and Commerce have meet to discuss and come up with solution which will stop the ever expanding Charcoal business and the usage of charcoal as cooking fuel instead opting for alternative energy Sources.
The three Ministers and the representatives of the various stakeholders meet today at the Ministry of Environment and Rural Development headquarters to discuss a proposed action plan drafted by the Minister of Environment and also to determine how each of the three ministries would utilize its own resources so as to reduce the effects of Charcoal production on the environment and the livelihood of rural society.
Hon Hussein Abdi Dualeh, the Minister of Energy and Mineral resources addressing the participants of the meeting said, “It’s a high time we (Government) should diverse a viable plan and to adopt policies which will halt environmental degradation caused by the charcoal production.
“The current problem is affecting the whole country and its issue we can’t ignore any longer hence the need for the government to incorporate its efforts and the Ministry of Environment can’t achieve this alone that why we should jointly assert our efforts and for the government to adopt policies to stem out the problem”, stated Hon Hussein A Dualeh.
Hon Shukri Bandare, the Minister of Environment and Rural Development speaking during the meeting said, “I am hopeful we shall soon be able to implement Longer-term strategies to deal with this problem and I do hope the parliament approves the environmental act soon so that we can halt the usage of charcoal in at least six months’ time.
“ I also hope the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources will be able to come up with Longer-term strategies aimed at diversifying the number of affordable energy sources in Somaliland so that we shift from the usage of charcoal to alternative energy Sources such as invest in coal, solar and gas energy sources and more access to cheaper Kerosene stoves and not forgetting the important role which we expect the Ministry of Commerce to play such as granting licenses to traders so that they can to import LPG [liquefied petroleum gas] and kerosene stoves tax free in order to solve the problem within a one year time frame”, Hon Shukri Bandare said.
The Ministry of Environment and Rural Development has in the recent past raised alarm over the quick rate of the deforestation and erosion are often the end result of harvesting wood for charcoal to be used as cooking fuel.