Category "News"

Ethiopia currently has 180,000ha of forest cover. The government projects to increase this by five percent within two years. The nation is gearing up to adopt a new 10-year master plan for sustainable forest management.
The draft master plan, National Forest Sector Development Program, is developed by the Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change and has five principal pillars – enabling environment and institutional development, sustainable forest production and value chain, forest environmental services, forests and rural livelihoods, and urban greening and urban foresting.
The master plan envisions the reforestation of nearly 2.5 million hectares of land with tree plantations, the creation of over 600,000 full-time jobs, increasing the value of agriculture and other sectors by 3.2 billion dollars and fully substituting the import of wood products.
The plan is intended to be used by regional states as a blueprint to formulate their own programs to lower carbon emissions into the atmosphere by 50pc.
“It will be the principal policy document in coordinating strategic interventions and directing sector-wide investments for the next 10 years,” said Tefera Mengistu (PhD), coordinator at the Ministry’s Forest Sector Development Program.
To attain the goals of the national forestry plan, roughly 15 billion dollars in investment are needed, and the plan is to target and leverage growing global interest to reduce deforestation and improve the management of existing forest resources.
The United Nations Development Programme, and the governments of Norway and Sweden have already pledged 10.5 million dollars and 6.5 million dollars, respectively.
“The local demand for forest products has increased over the past years,” Tefera said, explaining the need for the new master plan. “Besides, the global phenomenon of climate change needs to be addressed strategically.”
The plan replaces the Ethiopian Forestry Action Program, which has been in place since 1994.
“As Ethiopia continues to experience rapid economic growth, the demand for timber, non-timber forest products and environmental services increases, making the role forestry plays in the economy more important and relevant,” said Ababu Anage, national climate change specialist at the UN agency.
Currently, Ethiopia has 180,000ha of land under forest cover, and the government plans to increase this figure by five percent by the end of 2020. To attain its current demand for timber, Ethiopia has to develop about 310,000ha of new commercial forest plantation.
“We have to create well-managed commercial forests,” argues Tefera. “To attain this, we need to invite the private sector to engage in the forest industry.”
To reach this target, the master plan envisages the establishment of new commercial plantations, tree planting in the form of small-scale woodlots, afforestation, reforestation and forest landscape restoration.
The plan is also aligned with the Climate-Resilient Green Economy strategy, according to Ababu.
“Protecting and re-establishing forests for their economic and ecosystem services is one of its main stakes,” he said.
The project aims to double the contribution of the industry to the country’s gross domestic product by 2020, which currently stands at four percent.
“Forestry is a missed opportunity in Ethiopia,” said Mulugeta Limenih (PhD), an expert on forestry with over a decade experience, at a press conference organised by the Ethiopian Forestry Society. “There is very little public investment in forest development, and private players are not attracted to it.”
Ethiopia needs to have a long-term strategy and a robust institutional environment, he added.
Ethiopia’s natural forests and woodlands hold various commercially essential forest products, according to the report.
Ethiopia’s forests generated economic benefits in the form of cash and in-kind income equivalent to 16.7 billion dollars in 2012. Over the past decade, Ethiopia imported over 1.1 billion dollars worth of wood and wood products.


Addis Ababa is moderately polluted and that is a major environmental risk which could affect sensitive people, Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MEFCC) State Minister Negusu Lemma disclosed.

Speaking at the Air Quality Management Workshop that opened  in Sptember 17/2018 at addis ababa, the State Minister said “97 percent of cities in low and middle income countries with more than 100,000 inhabitants do not meet the World Health Organization air quality guidelines.”

Addis Ababa Environmental Protection Agency General Manager, Alemi Asefa said on her part old cars with high gas emission rate, and gas from solid wastes released especially by constructions and industries are mainly aggravating pollution in the city.

According to her, the US Environmental Protection Agency Air Quality Management Plan that will be delivered in early 2019 helps to identify major air pollution sources, general status of the city and its health and economic impacts.

US Charge d’affaires Troy Fitrell said US and Ethiopia will work in partnership to improve air quality management to build healthy environment and population in the country.

“The US believes that an investment in improving Ethiopia’s air quality is an investment worth making because clean air is not leisure, it is a necessity we cannot live without,” Fitrell added.

The Workshop discussed various aspects of air quality management, policies and sources.



Collaboration Workshop (CoLab) on Building a Water Resilient City Convenes Partners, Subject Matter Advisors, and City Representatives to Drive Innovation and Introduce Pathways to Enhance Urban Resilience

CoLab Precedes Launch of City’s Preliminary Resilience Assessment and Feeds into Development of Comprehensive Resilience StrategyCape Town, South Africa – In the context of a partnership toward building a more resilient Cape Town, 100 Resilient Cities – Pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation (100RC) is hosting a Collaboration Workshop (CoLab) on Building a Water Resilient City this week. The CoLab, to be attended by international partners and experts, representatives from city governments, and other member cities from the 100RC global network, will take a cross-sectoral approach to building and identifying innovative and collaborative solutions and practices needed to bridge gaps endemic to highly complex, systemic urban issues. The CoLab runs September 18-20 at GreenCape, a sector development organisation funded by the City of Cape Town.

This is the first CoLab to be run in Africa, building off of previous workshops on economic development, school infrastructure, and public transportation held over the past year in cities across Europe, South America, and North America.

The multi-year drought shock that Cape Town is currently experiencing is an opportunity to more comprehensively think about water system resilience and to catalyse change through introducing alternative, resilient pathways guided by sustainability. The CoLab is expected to drive innovation and identify solutions toward fortifying the resilience of Cape Town’s water system and the city’s wider resilience for years to come.

“Cape Town has shown certain characteristics of resilience during the drought, but much more needs to be done before we can truly regard Cape Town as a water resilient city. What the City of Cape Town and its people have achieved during the drought is remarkable, but we must ensure that the lessons we learnt during the drought are retained, and make us better prepared for future shock events,” said Councillor Xanthea Limberg, Mayoral Committee Member for Informal Settlements, Water and Waste Services.

“Cape Town is not alone: water-related hazards like floods, droughts, pollution, and related issues are increasing in frequency and intensity, impacting more than 80% of 100RC member cities worldwide,” said Liz Agbor-Tabi, Associate Director for City Resilience Delivery at 100 Resilient Cities. “The CoLab is a unique opportunity to explore how water ties into Cape Town’s larger social, economic, and political ecosystem – with the aim of fostering a stronger, more resilient city.”

A 100RC CoLab is a collaborative, expedited process between municipal government, subject matter experts, and members of the 100RC Platform of Partners. The 100RC Platform is a curated suite of resilience-building tools and services, provided by partners from the private, public, academic, and non-profit sectors at no direct cost to member cities. 100RC Partners at the Cape Town CoLab include: Arup, Deltares, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, The Nature Conservancy, Swiss Re, Veolia, and WWF South Africa, with additional collaboration from the SA SDI Alliance and The Resilience Shift. Also attending the event to contribute their cities’ experience are representatives from fellow 100RC members Los Angeles, Mexico City, and Addis Ababa.

The City of Cape Town is currently in the process of developing its first Resilience Strategy with support from 100 Resilient Cities. The City will launch its Preliminary Resilience Assessment, a robust analysis of Cape Town’s resilience opportunities and challenges, on Friday. Findings reveal drought, rainfall flooding, unemployment, and substance abuse as top concerns among more than 150 thematic specialists consulted and over 11 000 residents surveyed in the months-long assessment process. Challenges incorporate one-time shock events as well as stresses that weaken the urban fabric on a day to day or cyclical basis.

“Water management is a crucial component of Cape Town’s resilience-building process, but it cannot be addressed in a silo,” said Gareth Morgan, Director of Resilience in the City of Cape Town’s Corporate Services Directorate. “Our city’s vulnerability to climate shocks has distinct implications for a growing population shouldering high rates of unemployment, poverty, and a lack of affordable housing. Although daunting, these challenges are also our greatest opportunities.”

The CoLab will explore the impacts of drought and water insecurity on the city’s resilience, understand underlying causes and barriers, and utilise the collective experience and knowledge of the local and international participants to develop concrete courses of action – to help Cape Town’s water system become more resilient to the physical, social, and economic challenges of the present and future. Apart from advancing thought leadership on the topic of water system resilience, the resulting practical recommendations and technical, multi-disciplinary resources will inform the development of Cape Town’s Resilience Strategy.


For further information, please contact:

Nicole Bohrer-Kaplan / 646-612-7177

About 100 Resilient Cities—Pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation 

100 Resilient Cities – Pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation (100RC) helps cities around the world become more resilient to social, economic, and physical challenges that are a growing part of the 21st century. 100RC provides this assistance through: funding for a Chief Resilience Officer in each of our cities who will lead the resilience efforts; resources for drafting a resilience strategy; access to private sector, public sector, academic, and NGO resilience tools; and membership in a global network of peer cities to share best practices and challenges. For more information, visit:

The United States Environmental Protection Agency is set to team up with the Addis Ababa Environmental Protection Agency and the Ethiopian Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change, to help improve the air quality management system of Addis Ababa. This is to be a project titled – USEPA Megacities Partnership- and will be launched in the capital on September 17/ 2018 inside the compound of the United Nations Conference Centre.
The new effort comes as Addis Ababa, with its ever-expanding populations and lack of infrastructure is facing a chronic problem of air pollution that has caused health damages to thousands of residents. The week-long gathering that will host senior delegates from the US and Ethiopia is set to hear on the current state of air quality and relevant policies, learn the basics of air quality management and how to design and analyze AQM strategies and policies that can improve public health.
According to the US Embassy in Addis, the objective is to “Assist Addis Ababa to develop capacity, apply tools and analysis, and motivate action to address air pollution”.
In Ethiopia, a majority of the population continues to rely on biomass fuels, such as wood and charcoal as a substitute to modern energy, helping extradite air pollution and leading to premature deaths throughout the country. Despite an improved economical status of the nation, there is no environmental quality control within the country.
While the Government of Donald Trump continues to be lukewarm to the needs of the environment and international development, EPA continues to collaborate with local partners on sustainable development projects that impact some of the most vulnerable populations in the world.
The gathering is set to hear from a number of dignitaries, including the acting mayor of Addis Ababa, Tekele Uma Benti and the ambassador of the United States to Ethiopia, Michael Raynor.
Source-Reporter newspaper

According to the Addis Ababa City Fire, Emergency Prevention and Rescue Agency’s annual report, 83 people were killed in the city from floods and fires. Holes from construction sites contributed to another 88 people being injured. Flooding and fires damaged many shops and homes causing a loss of 408.4 million birr.
In total there were 535 floods and fires this fiscal year. This included the fire that damaged 140 shops near the Grand Anwar Mosque in Mercato causing 57 million birr in property damage.
Two weeks ago a pregnant woman and her two children drowned when they were trapped by flood waters while washing clothes by a river in Asko. Police have yet to find their bodies.
Poor safety management of construction sites means that floods are increasing according to the report. Bole Sub- City, one of the most affluent places, had 83 incidents while Adiss Ketema and Kolfe had 65 and 64 accidents respectively.
In the previous fiscal year 531 accidents occurred in the city, snatching the lives of 83 people and injuring 119. Negatu Mulu, Communications officer told Capital that helicopters and boats should be purchased because they could be used to save lives.
“Two weeks ago there were floods in Akaki and it took hours to borrow boats and helicopters from defense forces and later the helicopters came but we did not manage to rescue people and finally our rescue workers swam and saved the people’s lives. If we had a helicopter and boats we could manage our service when big fires occur.”
A recent study by the Agency disclosed that 121,000 households across all sub- cities and 1,000 government and private institutions are vulnerable to flood disasters. The study identified 143 places as high risk and stated that if the necessary relocation or reconstruction is not made soon disasters may kill thousands and damage 4.5 billion birr in property. Many of the risky places are found in Gullele and Nifas Silke Sub city where there are homes near river and drainage sites.
Riversides in Addis Ababa have been a source of worry for residents. They have been dogged by landslides, pollution and lack of development for ages. But due to a spate of development activities, that might change soon.
The research found that Addis Ababa Rivers and riversides face problems which include: badly polluted segments through direct discharge of domestic waste generated mainly from households and institutions; river bank erosion; and inaccessible rivers and riversides.

The Addis Abeba City Road Traffic Management Agency is set to upgrade accident-prone roads by installing and maintaining traffic lights, safety devices, signage and marking at a cost of 220 million Br.
The installation of traffic lights will take place at 31 proposed road intersections. It will also include maintenance work that consist of repainting 50Km of lanes and zebras, and fixing road studs along 82 different streets. While the traffic lights will cost 54 million Br, the upgrades and maintenance work will take up 128 million Br.
Covering lane dividers and pedestrian crossings with new coats of paint will cost 39 million Br. The project is a continuation of a previous repainting project of around 100Km of roads.
The work will be completed by the end of November. A tender for repainting work on another 145Km of roads has been floated as a separate project.
Four contractors, ATS Engineering, Yared Seyoum General Contractor, Yemane Tewolde General Contractor and Bed Rock Construction were hired to complete the work. Yohannes Abbay Consulting Architects & Engineers will play supervisory roles.
The project will also include the installation of speed humps, rumble strips that were started in the last budget year but interrupted by the rainy seasons, and road studs.
Road studs, which illuminate the roads at night time and make sounds when vehicles pass over them, are made out of glass beads and light emitting diodes.
The glass beads are reflectors made from aluminium alloy with compression resistance of over 30tn while the diodes use solar energy to recharge themselves.
These road studs will be installed at 82 location where overpasses and underpasses start. Bollards, short and sturdy posts, will also be used to close access to vehicles on some of the roads.
“The Addis Abeba City Road Authority allows urgent maintenance and installation work as necessary and as environmental and other conditions permit, which is the case here,” according to Demelash Gebremariam, deputy director for Road Resource Administration of the Authority. “The agency has only to inform the authority by any means of communication the need or the urgency of the installation or maintenance.”
The Agency also plans to conduct awareness creation campaigns beginning this month in a bid to reduce livestock travelling on city’s roads, according to Genetu Dessalegn, director of the Agency.
Fekadu Gurmessa (PhD), a transport geography lecturer at Addis Abeba University for more than a decade, lauds the effort made by the Agency. But he believes that continuous maintenance is necessary to justify the cost involved.
“The traffic lights, paint coatings and other safety signage don’t have a long life,” he said.

The Afincho-ber to Orma Garage Riverside Project, which will be built with a capital of little more than 600 million birr, is to be started in the coming project year.According to the Addis Ababa River and Riverside Development and Climate Change Adaption Project Office, the pilot project is in long list of other projects planned to be executed and make the city ever more clean and green.Talking to The Ethiopian Herald, Project Office Deputy CEO Debela Birru said that the Riverside project will not only provide socio-economic benefits to the public, but it is expected to elevate the aesthetics of the city by providing premier amenities for open space, recreation and culture. It will have walkways, and ermeable ponds and green areas, and as necessary, it will also have business centers that would in no way pollute the River, he added.
The Project Office has already selected winner form international bidders, and is in the process awarding the project.
Source-The Ethiopian Herald

Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) has signed an accord with Ethiopian government on September 4, 2018 to open its regional office in Addis Ababa, Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, State Minister of Foreign affairs, Afework Kassu lauded the Global Green Growth Institute’s decision to open its regional office in the capital.
Stating that Ethiopia’s significant efforts dedicated at building climate resilient green economy, the decision by GGGI to commission a regional office would display Ethiopia’s leading role in environment friendly development trajectory in Africa.
Moreover, the agreement inked to establish the original office aims at facilitating key systemic transformations in the economy and generate innovative ideas towards the full implementation of a climate resilient green economy strategy.
Dexippos Agourides, GGGI’s General Manager for Africa and Middle East said Ethiopia has done well in the process of building green economy, adding that this was the reason why Ethiopia was chosen by the Institute.
As Ethiopia is also a founding member of the Global Green Growth Institute, the country has been striving to build a green and environment friendly economy, he said.
The Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) is a treaty-based international organization with headquarter in Seoul, South Korea.
With its 27 member countries worldwide, GGGI is dedicated to supporting and promoting strong, inclusive and sustainable economic growth in developing countries.


The British Council will work with cities within the 100 Resilient Cities (100RC) network to identify how culture and the arts can strengthen urban resilience practice around the world. Its first report for a city in the 100RC network launched  on Septemeber 12, 2018 in Athens.

The British Council joins a group of 100RC Platform Partners, including organisations like Microsoft, Swiss Re and the World Bank. These partners help cities around the world prepare for, withstand, and bounce back from the ‘shocks’ – catastrophic events like hurricanes, fires, and floods – and ‘stresses’ – slow-moving disasters like water shortages, homelessness, and unemployment – which are increasingly part of 21st century life. They do this by providing and developing tools for building urban resilience.

Leveraging a city’s arts and cultural assets significantly boosts its resilience-building efforts, with culture and creativity supporting wellbeing, economy, and leadership. These are underpinned by heritage, knowledge sharing and cultural diversity.

The impact of culture and the arts is evident in resilient communities, from spurring economic activity through entrepreneurship to providing spaces for reflection, reconciliation and remembrance in the aftermath of traumatic events.

The British Council’s global network of offices and trusted links with arts organisations and community groups will help 100RC member cities embed cultural initiatives and considerations into their planning. This will make a critical contribution to designing and implementing citywide Resilience Strategies.

Athens is the first in the 100 Resilient Cities network to work with the British Council. ‘Athens City Resilience Through Culture’, a report drawing on consultations with Athens’ cultural and arts professionals as well as those involved in the city’s wider development, launches 12 September and will include a discussion of the report’s recommendations with representatives of the City of Athens, the British Council and 100 Resilient Cities.

One of the issues addressed in the report is the impact of the Greek economic crisis of 2008 on Athens. While the years of austerity have seen a rise in unemployment, and other social pressures in Athens, they have also provoked a wave of citizen mobilisation, solidarity networks, and the growth of civil society efforts.

On the release of its Resilience Strategy in June 2017, and while hosting internationally renowned cultural events such as Documenta 14, Athens emerged as a social innovator by supporting new models of engagement and participation among its residents.

Among the report’s recommendations are:

  • establishing a creative industries expert advisory board to help drive the creative economy of Athens;
  • exploring new finance models for the cultural sector;
  • identifying leading Athenian cultural platforms such as synAthina, Athens Culture Net and OPANDA to coordinate cultural and arts activities.

It is hoped that the report’s recommendations will serve as a model for other members of the 100RC global network to focus actively on the cultural components of resilience.

Sir Ciarán Devane, Chief Executive, British Council said: ‘Creative expression and collaboration enable cities not just to survive shocks and stresses, but to thrive. The British Council’s relationships with arts organisations and community groups in 110 countries mean we are well placed to help city leaders unlock the unique value that culture can add to urban resilience strategies.’

Michael Berkowitz, President of 100 Resilient Cities, said: ‘In an increasingly complex and challenging world, cities need partnerships with organisations like the British Council to withstand the shocks and stresses of the 21st century. By providing expertise to network cities on leveraging arts and culture in resilience building, the British Council is adding a vital dimension to our global resilience movement, just when it is needed.’

Eleni Myrivili, Athens’ Deputy Mayor for Urban Nature, Resilience and Climate Change Adaptation, added: ‘The City of Athens Office of Resilience and Sustainability has been working closely with the British Council to produce a report with recommendations on how we as a city can harness the power of arts and culture in the face of our unique challenges. Through this partnership, the City has escalated its commitment to cultural aspects of resilience; I hope that this report will further expand the ways we understand the role that arts and culture play in building resilience in an urban environment.’

The British Council is planning a series of engagements for 2019 with other cities in the 100RC network. A consultation will soon begin in the Palestinian city of Ramallah, which is under stress from the sustained conflict affecting the region, exploring ways to establish stronger links between the city’s cultural activity and its education system.

The British Council’s work with 100 Resilient Cities forms part of its Culture and Development programme, which explores creative responses to sustainable development challenges.

Each city in the 100RC network receives access to the Platform of Partners, a curated suite of resilience-building tools and services from the private, public, academic, and NGO sectors, which can be used to help develop and implement their Resilience Strategies.

Platform partners are dedicated to providing 100RC network cities with solutions that integrate big data, analytics, technology, resilience land use planning, infrastructure design, and new financing and insuring products.


We sat down with Fitsumbrhan Tsegaye, Addis Ababa’s first Chief Resilience Officer, to learn more about the city’s resilience journey. Since authoring Addis Ababa’s application to the 100RC Challenge in 2015, Fitsumbrhan has become an active spokesperson for urban resilience in the Horn of Africa region. Here he shares with us challenges and opportunities for the road ahead.

Read the full story on the 100 Resilient Cities blog

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