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Uganda makes progress in protecting mountain areas

Reporter: Leon Ssenyange 丨 CCTV.com

10-24-2016 06:15 BJT

Climate change, rapid population growth and land-use changes are threats to mountainous regions around the world. These areas are home to more than 10% of the world's population. Policies that ease the uncertainties for people who live there are important.

On the slopes of Mountain Elgon, Webisa Yusuf tends his garden. Farming has been his livelihood for years. But recent changes to ecosystems have greatly affected him.

"During rainy seasons…the water from the mountain washes away our crops..that brings us problems," Yusuf said.

mountains cover 27% of the earth's land surface and hold key resources for minerals and food. But much is now being lost.

Now more than ever mountains are feeling the impact of climate change, which is also affecting the communities living in these areas.

But it's hoped that with increased global cooperation to tackle climate change, this will help limit the damage it causes.

But not all is doom and gloom. Progress is being made in designating protected mountain areas for the conservation of biodiversity.

"The new evidence that for example that 60-80% of the world's fresh water resources come form mountains..25% of terrestrial biodiversity is in mountains..so when we look into the future these are points..global important services for mountains which need to be recognized in global frameworks..but also at national level..in policy making and action on the ground," Thomas Hofer, coordinator of Mountain Partnership, said.

Initiatives that provide opportunities to support mountain communities have also emerged. But failure to mobilize resources remains a major challenge

Mountain people have limited capacity to adapt and limited resources, because of this they need support from global communities, new knowledge, new technology, new ideas, adaptation requires resources," Golam Rasul with Int'l Center for Intergrated Mountain Dev't, said.

Many mountain communities remain isolated and are still unable to attract investment for development.

Enhanced protection and awareness of ecosystems is now making it less of a mountain to climb.

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