Forest destruction is probably the most widely recognized form of ecosystem degradation, since it so rapidly and dramatically transforms the structure of the habitat. In Uganda today, about 9% of the land surface area is covered by forest that reduced from 11% in 2015/16. The loss and degradation of wetlands and forests is driven by several factors: increased demand for agricultural land associated with population growth, corruption, limited institution capacity and infrastructure development among others. The continued diminishing wetland cover has continued to affect Major catchment areas, namely; Rivers Mpanga and Semuliki in Western Uganda and Aswa in Northern Uganda which to a large extent is responsible for the intermittent rains and climate change that we face in these specific locations. Increasing rates of degradation of natural habitats and biodiversity present a significant risk of diminishing ecosystem services, thereby affecting tourism, agriculture, electricity generation, fishing and the livelihoods that depend on these sectors. (MWE, 2020).
Our Goal as a Department
Contributing to government of Uganda Goals as enshrined in NDP III on conservation that among others include; Increasing land area covered under forests and wetlands, increase forest, tree and wetland coverage, restore bare hills and protect mountainous areas and rangelands; Strengthen land use and management; Maintain and/or restore a clean, healthy, and productive environment; Promote inclusive climate resilient and low emissions development at all levels; Reduce human and economic loss from natural hazards and disasters; Increase incomes and employment through sustainable use and value addition to water, forests and other natural resources.
Therefore, the department is responsible for the coordination of several projects that seek to improve forest and wetland governance, restoration of degraded areas, ecosystems management and sustainable use of ecosystem services, and a number of projects the foster the delivery of Green skills, Green jobs and generally descent employment of young and women in the ENR sector.
JESE therefore seeks to champion a holistic approach to catchment management that addresses and safeguards wetlands, forests and livelihoods of communities in all the areas where our programmes are implemented in Uganda.
What we plan to do (2021-2026)
Going forward (2021-2026, the department seeks to achieve the following results;
Under this department we deploy the following approaches