Posts Tagged ‘East Africa’

NWNL “Pool of Books” 2017

December 19, 2017

NWNL has compiled a list of new and old favorite books about water issues and our case-study watersheds for your reference for gifts and for the New Year. Many of the authors and publishers are personal friends of NWNL. All of them are worth reading. The links provided below go to Amazon Smile, where a portion of all purchases go to an organization of the buyers choice. Please help support NWNL by selecting the International League of Conservation Photographers to donate to.



Rainforest by Lewis Blackwell (2014)

Replenish: The Virtuous Cycle of Water and Prosperity by Sandra Postel (2017)

Water from teNeues Publishing (2008)

North America:

The Salish Sea: Jewel of the Pacific Northwest by Audrey Della Benedict & Joseph K. Gaydos (2015)

Rancher, Farmer, Fisherman: Conservation Heroes of the American Heartland by Miriam Horn (2016)

The Last Prairie: A Sandhills Journal by Stephen R. Jones (2006)

Yellowstone Migration by Joe Riis (2017)

Sage Spirit: The American West at a Crossroads by Dave Showalter (2015)

Heartbeats in the Muck: The History, Sea Life, and Environment of New York Harbor by John Waldman (2013)

East Africa:

Serengeti Shall Not Die by Bernhard & Michael Grzimek (1973)

Turkana: Lenya’s Nomads of the Jade Sea by Nigel Pavitt (1997)

To the Heart of the Nile: Lady Florence Baker and the Exploration of Central Africa by Pat Shipman (2004)


A River Runs Again: India’s Natural World in Crisis, from the Barren Cliffs of Rajasthan to the Farmlands of Karnataka by Meera Subramanian (2015)

A child’s game in Uganda

June 18, 2014
Uganda, crossing Kasinga Channel, boys playing on Katunguro Bridge

Uganda, crossing Kasinga Channel, boy playing on Katunguro Bridge

November 5, 2013
East Africa, Kenya: Mara River Basin, No Water No Life Expedition to the Mau Forest: South Western Mau Catchment, Saino Primary School students in classroom working on assignment linking forests and water supply

Kenya: Mara River Basin, No Water No Life Expedition to the Mau Forest: South Western Mau Catchment, Saino Primary School students in classroom working on assignment linking forests and water supply

New pix shared

October 29, 2013

Check out NWNL’s new photo gallery – Mara River Basin: Use and abuse of its water resources.

African proverb…

May 3, 2013

Return to old watering holes for more than water;
friends and dreams are there to meet you.

East Africa:  Uganda, Murchison Falls National Park

East Africa: Uganda, Murchison Falls National Park

NWNL photos featured in article

January 23, 2013
Ethiopia, Lower Omo River Basin, Chelete, a Duss tribal communitiy, man with body and face paint holding AK 47 (Kalashnikov) in front of granary

Ethiopia, Lower Omo River Basin, Chelete, a Duss tribal communitiy, man with body and face paint holding AK 47 (Kalashnikov) in front of granary, Photo © Alison M. Jones for NWNL.

NWNL images from the Omo River Basin are featured in a recent article by Peter BosshardHow Chinese Loans Could Fuel Regional Conflict in East Africa. He writes, “The indigenous peoples of the Lower Omo Valley and Lake Turkana are extremely poor, but well-armed. They have a long history of resource conflicts over water, fisheries, and grazing land.” An extended version of this commentary also appeared, in English and Chinese, on chinadialogue.

White Nile River Basin Exp. – Queen Elizabeth NP

April 1, 2010

Welcome to #6 in a series of blogs written by Alison Jones before her departure to Uganda and Kenya as NWNL’s lead photographer.

Masurua Swamp

Woman collecting water amidst water hyacinth, marsh grass and papyrus in Masurua Swamp

Date: Thurs–Fri, 1–2 April 2010 /Entry 6
Reporter: Alison M. Jones
Location: Queen Elizabeth National Park

satellite image

Satellite photo of L. Edward and L. George

Our drive to the 488,000-acre Queen Elizabeth National Park will pass through Ishasha region, with its unusual tree-climbing lions. In shadow of Rwenzori Mtns, this park forms a saddle between the northeast shores of Lake Edward (the larger lake) and southwest shores of Lake George (the smaller lake). Its ecosystems include open savanna, rainforest, papyrus swamps, and crater lakes full of pink-backed flamingos. There are 100 mammal and 606 bird species here, as well as the Uganda kob. As well, this location has a reputation of having the rare occurrence of tusk-less female elephants. It will be interesting to learn what the possible causes of this genetic tendency may be – and discuss current status of poaching in Uganda’s national parks.

Egyptian geese

Egyptian geese

A boat trip on Kazinga Channel between the lakes will offer great “photo op’s” of hippo, fish eagles, buffalo, elephant and a wealth of bird life. Local fishermen come here in their reed boats from the village of Kazinga. They go out at night to avoid the hippos, which graze on land at night and spend the days in the water.

Within Queen Elizabeth NP, the Semliki River flows from L. Edward north to L. Albert demarcating the border between Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo, also part of the Nile River Basin. In some places the changing course of the Semliki River sparked confusion in 2009 over the location of the boundary. Due to the recent discovery of rich oil fields in this area, such boundary disputes between the two could lead to conflict.

From the field: Queen Elizabeth National Park, in East Africa’s Western Rift Valley, is a water-lover’s paradise. There are two shallow, but large lakes connected by a natural and wide channel with mountain ranges to the east and the west! Yet it is thought-provoking as far as protected area management in a country where tourism is the second largest foreign exchange earner. We have seen several issues first hand. The park has local villages within its boundaries. One of the park’s lakes allows local fishermen to haul their catches. There was a salt plant on the lake shore that only worked 1 year because engineers used metal pipes.

One of the greatest current threats within this lovely park is a limestone mine for cement production. While NWNL has not been not able to access this corner of the park; our Uganda partner, National Association of Professional Environmentalists (NAPE), has produced a booklet explaining violated laws, risks and impacts concerning this commercial extraction. NAPE contends that this project disrupts migratory corridors of wildlife; has progressed without consultation with local stakeholders; and uses heavy machinery in a fragile ecosystem that is an internationally-designated RAMSAR site. Furthermore, the environmental impact assessment was approved without any public hearing.

One concern the limestone mining project raises is that the migratory corridor will be destroyed, forcing animals into areas where they will destroy peoples’ crops. This could result in the death of both humans and wildlife. Another concern is that the lack of legal compliance regarding approval of this mining operation will impact usage of other Ugandan natural resources held in trust for the people. Ugandan environmentalists are concerned that this precedence will influence the method of exploration of newly-found oil in this Albertine Rift of the White Nile River Basin.

Mau Forest Degradation

December 4, 2009

Deforestation in the Mara River's headwaters

On September 22, 2009, Alison Jones, NWNL’s lead photographer, and Alison Fast, a NWNL videographer, had an aerial view of the headwaters of the Mara River. Flying over the Mau Forest, they documented the degradation of this “water tower,” source of 12 major rivers in Kenya. Most of these rivers feed Lake Victoria, the source of the White Nile.

Many years of settlement in this forest – legal and illegal – has resulted in farms replacing trees. This change in land use, destroying the forest’s ability to retain and gradually release water, has caused a critical decrease in year-round water supplies to millions of stakeholders throughout Kenya.

NWNL’s one-month expedition traveled the length of the Mara River from these headwaters to its Lake Victoria outlet in Tanzania. En route, NWNL examined other factors that have caused the Mara and other rivers to lose critical water flow and in some cases run dry. In addition to deforestation, commercial and small-scale farmers’ unregulated extraction of water for irrigation and a three-year drought have wrought havoc.

These drastically reduced water supplies have caused human and livestock deaths, created conflict and forced Kenyans to reevaluate their traditional lifestyles and livelihoods. The continuing effects of climate change and future droughts require sustainable solutions.

Most importantly, NWNL will report on very encouraging and bold answers now being worked on by politicians, farmers and stakeholders, as well as by local, regional and international stewardship organizations. NWNL will further describe its Mara River Basin Expedition findings in future blogs.

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