Kenya's President lifts 6-year logging ban to create jobs; environmentalists'  concerned - The Hindu

Kenyan President William Ruto has lifted a six-year ban on logging, despite concerns raised by environmentalists. President Ruto justified the decision by stating on July 2 that it was “foolish” to allow mature trees to rot in forests while local industries were facing a shortage of timber. He emphasized the importance of creating job opportunities for the youth and expressed the intention to open up the forests for timber harvesting.

President Ruto assumed the presidency in September, following his previous role as Deputy President. In 2018, during his tenure as Deputy President, he introduced a ban on logging to protect water catchment areas and mitigate the risk of a looming drought. The initial budget of his administration included a tax on all imported timber products, aiming to promote local manufacturing.

The lifting of the logging ban has raised concerns among environmentalists who worry about the potential adverse effects on forest ecosystems. While the decision aims to address the unemployment issue, it is crucial to strike a balance between economic development and sustainable environmental practices.