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29 November 2016

‘Ecological Restoration Needed At Mount Bamboutos’

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‘Ecological Restoration Needed At Mount Bamboutos’

The President/CEO of the Environment and Rural Development Foundation (ERuDeF) Louis Nkembi has underscored the urgent need for conservation measures and sustainable agricultural practices to be put in place in the Mount Bamboutos Area. This, according to him, will aid in restoring the depleted ecosystem while improving on the livelihood of rural farmers.

During a visit paid to the area last November 13, 2016 by ERuDeF and some visiting partners from VirginiaTech University, USA, the ERuDeF President/CEO observed that increase in agricultural activities; deforestation and unsustainable management of water and land use have induced forest resources depletion. The aftermath of this, according to Mr. Nkembi, has been destructive landslides and drying up of water sources, which are used for irrigation in the dry season. Meanwhile the remaining patches of gallery forest too are fast disappearing as there area is suffering from eucalyptus dominance.

“50 years ago, this Mountain (Bamboutos) was all covered with forest and farmers enjoyed very high yields but today, the Mountain is left with just patches of riparian forests. If prompt actions are not taken now, in the next 30 years, the forest will be completely empty” the President lamented.

He implored all farmers, farming around water catchments to give up a small portion of their farmlands so trees could be planted for the sustainable management of the watersheds. He recommended planting of endemic tree species for the restoration of depleting biodiversity species including insects, plants, reptiles, birds and the last remnant of the green monkeys.

Mount Bamboutos

Mt Bamboutos situated between long 09°57'E and 10°15'E and lat 05 °27'N and 05 °48'N belongs to the most important geomorphologic system in the Region. The mountain represents a key watershed, supplying at least one third of water feeding the major hydro-power system in Cameroon at Edea. It is also part of the Cameroon Mountains Endemic Bird Area having a high degree of endemism. In 2009, the Government of Cameroon designated it as a proposed Integral Ecological Reserve.

By Achingale Queen Anyifuet