EAC regional scientists to siphon nitrogen from Lake Victoria

APA-Kampala (Uganda)

Scientists from International Nitrogen Management Systems (INMS), Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA) University of Nairobi, Kenyatta University, Makerere University in partnership with Lake Victoria Basin Commission (LVBC) collectively reflected on strategies of harnessing nitrogen for productivity in Lake Victoria Basin region.

According to the East African Community (EAC) statement released on Tuesday, the meeting held in Kisumu Kenya last week recommended for good nitrogen management strategies for East Africa demonstration sites and enable participants appraise and familiarize themselves with barriers of achieving sustainable nitrogen management in the Lake Victoria Basin and potential options to overcome identified barriers.

LVBC Executive Secretary Dr. Ally-Said Matano emphasized balancing too much-too little paradox in the Lake Victoria Basin, hence the need for scientists to investigate practices, policies and existing knowledge on nitrogen at all levels—regional, national and local in East Africa.

“Sustainable use of nitrogen is relevant to Lake Victoria Basin region because 70 percent (35 millions) of citizens in the wider Lake Victoria derive their livelihoods from agriculture systems. However, there is need to optimize nitrogen for productivity while reducing environmental threats,” LVBC Executive, Dr. Matano said.

The LVBC also shared with scientists the nitrogen loading rate in Lake Victoria and how the water hyacinth derives its survival from higher nitrogen presence in the lake’s waters.

Scientists also cited limited implementation and enforcement of policy and legal instruments as a major gap still limiting strategic and operational management of nitrogen in the EAC member states.

Scientists observed that leaving large quantities of fertilizers such animal manure exposed to the sunshine makes valuable nitrogen escape into the atmosphere hence contributing to heat waves associated with climate change in some parts of the world.

According to Dr. Cargele Maso, the partnership between LVBC and INMS provides synergetic opportunities specifically in harnessing science to influence changes in policies, practices and cultures favorable to climate change because of destructive nitrogen within the EAC.


React to this article