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2015-10-15 | project

Source of pollution and causes of degradation of Lake Naivasha, Kenya

Using a blend of qualitative and quantitative approaches, this study aims at determining the perception of households about the level of pollution in the lake and the sources of pollution. It will also use a multi-criteria decision analysis to arrive at optimal solutions to the problem, and a discrete choice model to determine the predictors of investment in environmental conservation by households within the lake catchment to inform policy.

Lake Naivasha is a Ramsar wetland rich in biodiversity. The lake’s catchment is of immense economic significance in terms of tourism, geothermal power production and horticultural industry. The horticultural industry has been rapidly expanding and contributes significantly to the country’s foreign exchange earnings. Currently the lake faces numerous challenges, the key ones being increased pollution, declining water levels, spread of invasive species and general threat to biodiversity. While there is agreement that pollution and general degradation of the lake and its catchment are occurring, no study has conclusively determined the sources of these problems. The proposed study intends to fill this gap and contribute to informed debate.

The proposed study will attempt to establish the exact sources of pollution and causes of degradation of Lake Naivasha with the broad objective of suggesting policy interventions. The specific objectives will be to:

  1. Establish community’s perception of the level and sources of pollution in the lake;
  2. Determine the organic pollution at strategic locations in the lake to establish the likely sources;
  3. Engage stakeholders to arrive at optimal solutions;
  4. Determine the predictors of household’s participation in environmental conservation; and
  5. Suggest policy recommendations.