Another Forest to Bite the Dust!?
What is it with the hearts of people when it grows so cold, so hard, so meaningless? What does it mean to live one’s life in a manner that separates life from life? The 2011 Japanese Earthquake-Tsunami offered the people of the earth a chance to open that conduit again, and yet the mainstream talk only seems to centre on cost, stocks, and the profit that can be earned through rebuilding Japan again as the U.S., did after Hiroshima.
Many opportunities present themselves for us to reconnect with ourselves again, and again, and again, like the Sheka Forest of southwest Ethiopia, a rich culture of biodiversity, livelihood and sustainability that had gotten caught up in the greedy fingers of expanding urbanization, illegal logging, expanding coffee and tea plantations, to land grab opportunists like Sheikh Mohammed Al Amoudi, who opened the Gemadro Coffee Estate trading with companies like Starbuck under the “fair trade” deal when employees receive far from a respectable wage, while pollution the river, deforesting the area, and compromising land fertility and sustainability.
Ignoring traditional practices of land sustainability, the medicinal plants are disappearing too. For a people who have lived off the grid, in a sustainable manner without need or want from the world outside, this crime against 200 distinct clans with 80 languages which speaks of what it means to live together in harmony in an area that 772 square miles 400 miles south of the capital Addis Ababa…
What You Can Do…
Contact the following organizations for more information on how you can support them in their advocacy for improved local forestry management and training in traditional knowledge and practices: MELCA, Non-Timber Forest Products and Participatory Forest Management, Ethio-Wetlands and Natural Resources Association, and WWF-Ethiopia.