Thursday, July 20, 2017

A Water Weed Is Damaging Ethiopia's Largest Lake and Putting Livelihoods at Risk

(July 20, (Global Voice))--Since 2012, an invasive weed known as the water hyacinth has been subsuming tens of thousands of acreage of the surface of Lake Tana, as well as adjacent wetlands and ranches surrounding the lake.

About two million Ethiopians directly depend on the lake as well as adjacent wetlands and ranches for their livelihood, according to Nature And Biodiversity Conservation Union (NABU), a German non-governmental organization focused on sustainability and conservation in the region.

The steady growth of the water hyacinth has taken a toll, particularly on the western side of the lake, an area populated by fishermen, farmers, and ranchers whose work depends on it. The vast, 832-square-mile body of water is Ethiopia's largest lake, and is packed with ecological, cultural and historical charm. It is situated in the highlands of Ethiopia’s second-largest region, Amhara administrative state.

Ecologically, Lake Tana is home to rare and endangered bird species such as the black-crowned crane and also hosts several migratory birds. Lake Tana is also notable for being the headwaters of the Blue Nile river that flows westward before it merges with White Nile at Khartoum, Sudan’s Capital. Read more from  Global Voice »

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