Tanzania: Achieving Renewable Energy in Tanzania
THE evening sun is setting on a group of women carrying firewood, casting long shadows behind them.
They are on their way back to the village, Matema, after having spent almost the whole day collecting firewood from the village forest.
They spent three hours walking to reach the now thin forest, about another three hours collecting firewood and now they are on their way back to their homes.
They are likely to take longer to reach home, what with the heavy loads of firewood on their heads. They are also tired and hungry. In recent years, the forest has receded further away from the village.
Deforestation is taking its toll and women must bear the brunt as the increasingly scarce firewood is the only source of energy they use in their homes for cooking and lighting.
The use of firewood causes severe indoor pollution and is a threat to the health of families.
Recent reports suggest that forests cover about 30 per cent of the global land area, which stands at an estimated 4 billion hectares but global annual deforestation is estimated to be 18.7 million hectares, about 0.5 per cent.
For developing countries like Tanzania, deforestation accounts for 70 per cent of greenhouse gas emissions, according to Carbontanzania website.
A report by WWF published on April 3, 2018 says that while forests absorb 30 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions, global deforestation accounts for between 15 and 20 per cent of the emissions.