Ethiopia Soil Degradation and Overpopulation Paper
Summary of the overall environment The country environment has characteristics of grasslands, woodlands, forests, wildlife, rivers, lakes, armbands, livestock, and open space. More than half the land surface is arid and dry; the rest of the land has moisture in the air which can help with the growth of faming and woodlands (Ethiopia Table of Contents, n. D. ). The city environment is characterized by high populations of people, many homes and housing market centers that are overrun with people and industrial waste.
One of the countries most concern at this time is the use of land resources and how the land is being managed with use of resources available. The land has been degraded because of the maintenance the land needed and did not get. The government of Ethiopia has been careless about what the future would hold for their people (Ethiopia Table of Contents, n. D. ). Overpopulation in Ethiopia is a problem for many living there, the streets can not occupy all the people, there is a need for better roads and housing (Ethiopia Table of Contents, n. D. ).
Through social changes and making adjustments to an increasing population in Ethiopia, there have been industrial expansions. This has caused the water and air to produce more pollution (Ethiopia Table of Contents, n. D. ). Populations are vulnerable in Ethiopia; they have been affected by a wide rarity of conditions. . “The lingering effects of past drought and war disasters. 2. Shock disasters such as flooding and drought. 3. Years of declining or limited access to means of adequate productivity, leading to chronic structural deficiencies” (UN Emergencies for Ethiopia, 2006).
Soil Degradation Assessment Soil degradation is a widespread problem all over the world. An attempt was made to isolate the problems in Ethiopia with soil degradation. Annual cropping was considered one of the major problems for soil degradation including the changing of crops each year. Overgrazing, eater, and wind are causes of soil degradation in Ethiopia (FAA/GAL, 2000). Higher the population size the more highly sever is the land degradation. All over Ethiopia there are varied rates of soil degradation due to climate, soil types, biological conditions, and plant life and farming systems.
The soil is not getting the nutrients that it needs to grow vegetation. Colonization and acidification is “seriously affecting crop yield and agriculture productivity” (FAA/GAL, 2000). Nitrogen and phosphorus, major nutrients are limiting productivity. Very little chemical fertilizer is used (FAA/GAL 2000), pests accumulate; eat the agitation and the nutrients out of the soil. Pests can eat a full crop of vegetation in less than a day in some areas. Shallow soils depth and water erosion are important factors in sloping highland areas. Additionally, water logging and flooding is a problem.
Farming and heavy rainfall in some areas are problems, by leaving the soil open to pests and animals (FAA/GAG 2000). Management and Rehabilitation of Degraded Soils There have been several attempts to replenish the soil and improve agricultural productivity. Fertilizer promotion has been a big step for improving crop yields. As a result the crop lied farmers were expecting were higher than the percentage yield they expected. Better seeds were also used in areas that were prone to drought and surplus areas. There have been problems associated with organic source fertilizers and lime.
Water development including “cut-off drains, waterways, micro-basins, and earth dams” has been used to correct problems with drought causing soil degradation. “A number of experiments conducted on waterlogged soils have indicated that making camber-beds and using broad-bed and furrow maker implements highly improved crop yields, particularly when nitrogen fertilizers were applied” (FAA/GAL 2000). Suggested Strategies for Soil Conservation Problems of soil degradation vary and earlier suggestions were made that did not solve the problem.
Different strategies have to be made in certain areas with the specific problem of soil degradation. 1 . “Protection of existing natural vegetation from excessive browsing illegal cutting, uprooting and burning, etc. , through active supervision by concerned organizations like the Forest Department and Agriculture Department. 2. Replanting bare slopes, with suitable plant species; proper care of growing plants until they are fully established and effective control, and grazing by vivisect. 3. Provision of alternate sources of fuel, food, animal food and other requirements for the local people” (Main, A. Mira, M. 1993). This is a plan that was implemented by Pakistan and was successful with their problem of degraded soil. 1 . “Changing the cropping patterns to include crops which add organic matter and nutrients to the soil I. E. , leguminous crops like alfalfa, berries, Sebastian and groundnut; the stubble of these crops should be ploughed-in for green immuring 2. Training the farmer in the technique of light irrigation (through small-sized oiled) at short intervals instead of heavy irrigation at long intervals for sandy soils, to minimize nutrient loss through leaching. 3.
Popularizing the use of balanced fertilizers by demonstrating their benefits as against the use of urea only, which is abundantly available in the market. ” The objective to this plan was “to guide the Government of Pakistan into preparing a viable National Conservation Strategy,” (Main, A. & Mira, M. 1993) and worked. This plan worked for Pakistan and would be an easy plan to implement for Ethiopia. Educating the farmers, WOUld be worth more in the end with better crops and vegetation. The need of the day is to protect prime agricultural land from misuse that may result in its degradation or loss. The government in Pakistan recognized the value of these plans and could not ignore the National Conservation Strategy that worked so well and profited from these ideas (Main, A. & Mira, M. 1993), so can Ethiopians government. Overpopulation Assessment There was an estimated guess in 1 990 that “Ethiopians population was about 51. 7 million. ” There has been one census taken in 1984. Because of hostilities in some regions an accurate census could not taken. “The population in the southern parts” could also only be estimated because Of so many nomads (Ethiopia Table Of Contents, n. . ). “Ethiopians population is about 89%” (Ethiopia Table of Contents, n. D. ) that live in rural areas and the other 11% live in the suburbs (this is only as estimate). The population has always been higher in the rural areas where there is room for “cultivation of crops and livestock-raising”. The climate, soil and altitude take into consideration where people live. Moderate temperatures are in the highlands, where more people can grow crops and raise livestock easier. It is estimated that seven children are born to one woman in a population of ,OOH.
Birth rates are higher in rural areas where more people live. “Ethiopians birth rate, high even among developing countries, is explained by early and universal marriage, kinship and religious beliefs that generally encourage large families, a resistance to contraceptive practices, and the absence of family planning services for most of the population” (Ethiopia Table of Contents, n. D. ). “The death rate was estimated at fifteen per one-thousand. ” This is because of “low standard of living poor health conditions, inadequate health facilities, and high rates of infant mortality” and child mortality.
Additionally, “infectious diseases, poor sanitation, malnutrition, and food shortages are” causes of the high death rates. Half the total deaths are from children under the age of five, because they are more susceptible to the environment. “Life expectancy in 1990 was estimated at forty-nine years for males and fifty-two years for females” (Ethiopia Table of Contents, n. D. ). In urban areas, life expectancy was “under fifty-three years” of age. Populations in rural areas have “a life expectancy of forty-eight years of age.
The more favorable statistics for urban areas can be explained by the wider availability of health facilities, greater knowledge of sanitation, easier access to clean water and food, and a slightly higher standard Of living” (Ethiopia Table of Contents, n. D. ). Population growth has expanded steadily since the 1 984 census was taken. “Based on the assumption of a gradual fertility decline, such as might be caused by steady economic development without high priority given to population and family planning programs, the population growth rate might fall to about 2. 1 percent in 2010-15, resulting in a population of 93 million in 2015. The program did not take heed to the people. They were not interested with family planning programs. Analysts believe the population to be high and assessed it necessary to implement a plan. Family planning is a pressing need for the economy of Ethiopia and will continue to implement this plan on an on-going basis (Ethiopia Table of Contents, n. D. ). Suggested Strategies for Overpopulation To have strategies that will not only work for short-term affects, long-term affects have to also be considered. By making short-term problems work effectively, on-going strategies will have to be incorporated.
The government will have to intervene along with partners hat are willing to work with the government that can help (UN Emergencies for Ethiopia, 2006). Since the war, victims of drought and on-going disasters from this will need assistance first. Years of strategies have been made and have helped those in need. The problems are only for short-term assistance. The long-term assistance would suggest a different approach to help Ethiopians need of food and other related assistance relief. Humanitarian issues and long-lasting operational state of affairs would have to be considered and recognized.
More aid will have to appropriately expensed and used more wisely (LINE Emergencies for Ethiopia, 2006). These strategies were used in China for controlling birth population and an overpopulation crisis. Do nothing at all and let the economy suffer or take a system that would encourage people to help their economy and help living conditions get better. This system worked, and I believe this System could work for the people of Ethiopia as well. 1 . Encourage people to marry and have children later in life. 2. A state supported birth control system. China used family planning methods and improved the population crisis and helped the economy.
The citizens helped the government with this family landing system in hopes that the standards of living would rise to a better economical rate. Birth control is still in the works with this strategy and is improving each year. ‘Birth rate will go down and education and income will go up. ” Lower birth rates in China has increased and “China is becoming a better place to live (World Overpopulation Awareness, 2006). The Chinese government is the cause of lower birth rates, and has helped the baby-boom population so its citizens can have happier, healthier lives in which to live.
The government with Ethiopia should also implement a plan as China. With elisions beliefs the citizens of Ethiopia is having a hard time with birth control and family planning. By using the strategies below, this would help short-term then make a lasting effect to run long-term. 1 . A state supported birth control system. 2. Use the program that China is using above (1 and 2). 3. Government aid in helping to teach families about the plan (not just the women, men too). The government could implement this plan and save millions of lives in the process. Since AIDS is very high in Ethiopia, this would help eliminate and/or control the disease.
This would make a better healthier population and living notations much better. Missionaries and the government of Ethiopia could work together and help the population to understand the benefits and religion aspects that would be beneficial to them. Conclusion Two environmental problems in Ethiopia have been addressed and strategies have been detailed to help in these areas. The question of why these environmental problems have happened, have been answered to best of ability. The need for Ethiopia to become a better, healthier, and happier country is important, not only for the people who live there but as a whole throughout the entire world.