LILONGWE, Malawi, October 06, 2021 (AEJ) - Dzalanyama Catchment Conservation Trust (DCCT) has been created to develop synergies among partners to best manage the fragile but critical ecosystem. The reserve is renowned for the water which is consumed by thousands of people and used by industries too, Leonard Sefu, chair of the board of trustees said in Lilongwe.
DCCT comes at the time when JICA supported Project of the Conservation and Sustainable Management of Dzalanyama (COSMA-DFR) a partnership with Department of Forestry is folding in 2022. The JICA support came following an emergency appeal made in 2014, after serious deforestation due to charcoal production and firewood consumption was registered in the reserve.
It is estimated that a total of 101 metric tons of charcoal is consumed per year in the three districts that borders the reserve namely; Lilongwe, Dedza and Mchinji. Studies shows that Lilongwe City residents consumes 78 Mt per year representing 76 percent according to the project findings.
Ted Kamoto, Deputy Director of Forestry explained that partnerships are key in as far management of critical ecosystems such as Dzalanyama is concerned.
“We need partnerships to work together in the management of these forest reserve. I am pleased to say that government has now approved recruitment of about forest rangers 310. It is our expectation that 30 of those will need to go deployed to Dzalanyama forest reserve reserve,” explained Kamoto during the event.
Dzalanyama Forest Reserve is a biodiversity hotspot that supports peripheral communities and those beyond with ecosystems services in terms of water supply. The reserve is also a lifeline of Lilongwe and Diamphwe rivers, providing food security and various economic benefits.
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