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SWFF Annual Report

SWFF Annual Report

USAID and the Government of Sweden launched the Securing Water for Food (SWFF) grand challenge for development in September 2013 during the World Water Week in Stockholm. Within two years after the launch, the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the Republic of South Africa joined the party of Founding Partners. Through SWFF, the partners have worked to identify and accelerate science and technology innovations and market-driven approaches that improve water sustainability to boost food security and ultimately alleviate poverty.

SWFF aims to increase access to innovations that help farmers produce more food with less water, enhance water storage, and improve the use of saline water and soils to produce food. Water Governance Institute (WGI) responded to SWFF call for proposals in 2015 and was selected as a winner from among 408 applications, representing 67 countries.

Twelve winners of the award were selected from the applications. WGI's winning proposal was titled "Promoting Commercial Aquaponics Farming Among Smallholder Farmers/Households for Water Efficiency, Food Security and Livelihoods Improvement in Uganda". The project will initially be implemented in 4 districts of Uganda; namely Kampala, Kamuli, Hoima and Adjumani that were selected based on their high poverty indices.

Kampala was selected because it is the central administrative center of the country; has wide gap between the rich and poor; and suffers from escalation of population as a result of rural-to-urban migration which is challenging the adequate delivery of social goods and services

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Pablo Fajardo, lawyer for the victims of environmental damage caused during Texaco's oil operations in the Ecuadoran Amazon (1964 to 1990), acquired by Chevron in 2001, celebrates with his clients, during a press conference in Quito, on July 11, 2018

 

In a resounding defeat for Chevron in a landmark pollution case, Ecuador’s Constitutional Court in a unanimous  decision rejected the oil major’s final appeal of a $9.5 billion pollution judgment that found the company deliberately dumped billions of gallons of toxic oil waste onto Indigenous lands in the Amazon rain forest. The decision was a total victory for the Indigenous groups that brought the case.

This decision is another huge victory for the people of Ecuador in their historic two-decade battle for environmental justice against the world's worst corporate polluter and rogue operator,” said FDA leader Luis Yanza, who initiated the lawsuit against Chevron in U.S. federal court in 1993.

This is a wake up call for oil companies operating in Uganda and around the world to ensure respect and protection of the environment amidst oil activities (exploration and exploitation). It is also an eye opener for local communities in the Albertain Graben to hold irresponsible oil companies and corporate polluters accountable for their actions in case of any environmental damage in the Albertain Graben.

 

Read the Full details below;

Boys mine sand at Nabuganyi Landing Site in Kayunga District on Saturday. PHOTO BY FRED MUZAALE

KAYUNGA- Twelve-year-old Peter Kasule, a Primary Five pupil at Nabuganyi Church of Uganda Primary School in Busaana Sub-county, Kayunga District, dropped out of school in second term last year.

He was lured into sand mining at Nabuganyi Landing Site on the banks of River Nile in Busaana Sub-county by boys his age, who joined what seems a lucrative venture to earn a living.

“My elderly father is unemployed and told me to go and look for some work to fend for the family; that is how I ended up in sand mining,” Kasule reminisces.

He is now employed by men to scoop sand from the river for which he is paid a paltry Shs5,000 per trip of a canoe full of sand.
“My dream was to become a lawyer and I am still optimistic that after raising enough money, I will go back and achieve my dream,” the visibly shy Kasule says.

School Vs business


Kasule is among hundreds of pupils in the district who drop out of school to eke a living through sand mining, cutting sugar cane, scaring away birds from rice gardens, vending vegetables in towns, bricklaying and fishing.

This trend, the district leadership says, is worrying as it is depriving pupils of a brighter future.

The sand miners use canoes to go to sections of the river where the sand is found. They then plunge under the water from where they scoop the sand using spades and place it in the canoe.

When the canoe is full, they take it to river banks where it is off-loaded. A trip of river sand goes for Shs500,000.

Mr Ramadhan Simali Kayunga, an inspector of schools for Ntenjeru County, says every term, at least 70 pupils drop out of school in the area.

“We have tried to sensitise parents on the need to invest in their children’s education but our efforts have not yielded much as parents seem not to value education,” Mr Simali says.

He adds that village leaders and sub-county community development officers have also abandoned their role of ensuring that all parents take their children to school.

Mr Simali said out of the 7,700 candidates who sat last year’s Primary Leaving Examinations in the district, only 281 passed in Grade One while 1,677 failed. Also, 619 pupils registered but did not sit for the exams.

Despite being near Kampala city, the district has for the last two consecutive years been ranked by the Uganda National Examinations Board among the poor performers.

Mr David Ssentamu, the head teacher of Nabuganyi Church of Uganda Primary School, which is located about a kilometre from River Nile in Busaana Sub-county, says some learners report to class twice a month while others spend months without coming to school.

Months out of school


“They spend most of the time mining sand or fishing and only report when exams are about to begin,” Mr Ssentamu says, adding: “We are now used to it [pupils dodging lessons] because however much you sensitise parents, nothing changes. Nabuganyi C/U has an enrolment of about 400 learners but on average, only 250 attend school every day.”

Mr Collins Kafeero, an officer in the district gender office, says child labour, especially in the sand mining business, is a major challenge in the district, pointing out that at least 600 children are engaged in the trade in Kangulumira, Busaana and Kitimbwa sub-counties.

The Resident District Commissioner, Ms Rose Birungi, blames the problem on failure by the Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs to approve the education ordinance enacted by the district council in 2014 to arrest parents whose children engage in child labour.

“We want to arrest parents whose children are involved in child labour but we have no law under which we can do this,” Ms Birungi notes.
She, however, adds that they plan to carry out operations in all sugar cane plantations and on the river banks to arrest children found working during school time.

About sand mining

Lucrative. Sand mining has in the past decades become a lucrative business due to the growing construction sector where it is used to make concrete.
Gazetted. Two months ago, government put sand, stones and murram under the category of minerals in the newly approved mining policy. Government believes this will end unregulated mining across the country.
Licence. Under the new policy, any one intending to venture into sand mining will be required to acquire a licence from the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources.
Fine. According to the new policy, anyone who will be caught engaging in sand mining without a licence will be fined Shs500,000 or jailed for one year, or both.
Concerns. Environmentalists say increasing sand mining in Lake Victoria and major swamps and rivers, saying excessive excavation of sand will spark off an ecological disaster.

Dropout rate

Uganda has the highest school dropout rate in East Africa, according to a 2010 report by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO).
Last year, out of the 7,700 candidates who sat last year’s Primary Leaving Examinations in the district, only 281 passed in Grade One while 1,677 failed. Also, 619 pupils registered but did not sit for the exams.

Read the original article on Monitor.

Part of Mr. Henry Bazira's, the Executive Director WGI comments after the talk show.

 

I actually did not know that it came out like this. Now I understand why the President had to write a press statement in today's paper trying to exonerate himself and attacking "pseudo civil societies". I even tempted to respond to his statement in the paper, because it is a direct attack on civil society and giving an impression that we are enemies of the State, which is not the case. We are just helping him understand his wrongs. For him to give the examples of history, the renaissance creed of the Christians, which was actually done to restore the place of the Roman Catholic church among a laity that were largely shifting into Protestantism and not address the issues of today is a misinformation and a deception

 

Listen and watch the whole talk show;

One stone at a time: the first, laid by President Museveni, paves the way for great aspirations

 

Government is in final stages of upgrading Uganda Petroleum Institute Kigumba (UPIK) to a University status.

The revelation was made by the Prime Minister of Uganda Dr Ruhakana Rugunda while representing President Museveni at the 24th coronation anniversary celebrations of the Omukama of Bunyoro Kitara.

Skilling challenges

Earlier, the Bunyoro Kitara Kingdom Prime Minister Andrew Byakutaga had told the gathering that President Museveni had in April met with the Omukama of Bunyoro at state house in Kampala to deliberate on various development programmes.

He reported that among others, the President agreed that a public university will become operational at Uganda Petroleum Institute Kigumba (UPIK).

Uganda’s Prime Minister who represented President Museveni at the celebrations reaffirmed the President’s promise.

“As Government, we have approved the operationalization of Bunyoro University at Kigumba. Since we have here the minister of Finance, he should expedite a release of the funds when the matter reaches his desk” Rugunda said.

UPIK

The Uganda Petroleum Institute Kigumba (UPIK) is a Government Tertiary institution that offers petroleum studies.

The institute is located in Kigumba town council in Kiryandongo district.It offers a two year diploma course in petroleum engineering.

According to the UPIK Academic registrar James Bagaya, priority consideration is being given to students who passed science at the Uganda Advanced certificate of Education (UACE). They should have done mathematics, physics, chemistry and technical drawing.

The students must have sat A Level not more than two years ago or having a national certificate in electrical, mechanical or any other Engineering course.

He says the students who have a national certificate from a recognized technical institute will be considered under a certificate entry scheme.

The students should have at least ten points, Bagaya says.

He said the institute recruits 35 students every academic year. The institute has repeatedly received a barrage of criticism of producing graduates that are not employed in Uganda’s mainstream oil and gas industry.

Projects

Uganda’s Finance Minister Matia Kasaija who hails from Bunyoro region and represents Buyanja County in the 10thparliament asked the Kingdom to bring to him proposals for development projects.

“I have repeatedly asked the Kingdom to bring those proposals to me. Bring them and leave me with a duty to look for funding” he said.

Preparations

Uganda has over 6.5 billion barrels of crude oil. The Government’s target is to kick off commercial oil production by 2020.

Under the Public finance Act, Cultural institutions   are entitled to a 1% share of oil royalties.

Since last year, the Omukama of Bunyoro Kitara Kingdom has been reorganizing his Kingdom. He instituted a seven-man Royal commission headed by Dr Kabagambe Kaliisa, a retired permanent secretary in the Ministry of Energy, and is currently a Presidential advisor on oil and gas.

The commission which he heads, does oversight on all Kingdom activities and it advises the Omukama who heads all clans in Bunyoro.

The discussion on how Bunyoro region can tap in the petroleum industry took centre stage as the Kingdom commemorated the Omukama’s 24th coronation anniversary celebrations.

The oil-rich Kingdom celebrated 24years since Omukama Dr Solomon Gafabusa Iguru 1 ascended to the throne. The Kingdom covers the districts of Hoima, Kibaale, Kagadi, Kakumiro, Buliisa, Kiryandongo and Masindi.

By Hoima Correspondent

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The Ugandan government plans to dispose-off crude oil stock that was accumulated during the oil exploration and appraisal phase.

Over 45,211 barrels of oil were reportedly accumulated during the extended well testing in the Albertine graben in Mid-Western Uganda.

Extended well tests (EWTs) are used to undertake further evaluation of the productivity and characteristics of reservoirs.

The tests help oil engineers and technicians in understanding the potential of reservoirs to enable better planning and definition of appropriate field development philosophies and production technologies. The exercise thus helps development engineers and production technicians to pilot future facility designs during actual oil field development and eventual production. Extended well testing also helps to obtain additional production-related data, such as water cut, sand production, and well deliverability.

The oil that was collected during the extended well testing is currently stored in bitutainers at oil well sites of Kasemene 1, Ngara 1 and Ngiri 2, all in Buliisa district. More oil is stored at Tangi Camp area in Nwoya district, Acholi sub-region.

Some locals in the oil-rich Bunyoro region have been suspicious about oil tankers that have been moving in and out of the Albertine graben. There has been speculation that the tankers could be siphoning oil out of the oil fields. Government and oil firms have repeatedly denied the accusations.

“Those speculations have been common and Government needs to come out clearly and transparently to explain what those tankers transport,” said Biira Nasser Kiwanuka, the Executive Director of Midwestern region Anti- corruption Coalition (MIRAC), a Bunyoro regional anti- corruption agency.

Oil in Uganda has learnt that Uganda National Oil Company (UNOC) Ltd is sourcing for companies that can purchase the 45,211 barrels of test crude in the Albertine graben.

UNOC’s overall function is to handle the State’s commercial interests in the oil and gas sub-sector and ensure that the resource is exploited in a sustainable manner in order enable realization of benefits for the current and future generations.

UNOC, as per the Petroleum (Exploration, Development and Production) Act and the Petroleum (Refining, Conversion, Transmission and Midstream) Act, both of 2013, is mandated to operate across the petroleum value chain (upstream, midstream and downstream).

Purchase for test oil up for grabs

The application process for interested firms in the purchase of the test crude oil is on-going and the deadline is July 10th this year, Oil in Uganda has learnt.

The applications are being submitted to the office of the UNOC Head of Procurement and logistics which is located at Amber house in Kampala.

The companies are required to present a crude oil stabilization plan including technology that will be used.

According to a procurement notice reference number UNOC/Disposal/17-18/001, the companies interested in purchasing the crude should make formal applications to UNOC.

-“Buyers must demonstrate the provision of suitably insulated and certified containers for transportation of heated test crude oil”, the notice reads in part.

-The buyers are required to provide the oil spill response plans and all vehicles being fitted with -kits and attachment of contractor personnel who will be trained on how to use them.

The buyers must have off-loading and feed pumps plus heaters.

-The buyer must demonstrate Quality, Health, Safety, and Environment (QHSE) management system, procedure/plans for journey management, incident management and spill response, the notice further reads.

The UNOC Communication Officer, Ms. Angella Kariisa said test crude was initially meant to be burnt through flaring during the well-testing activities.

“Government decided that is was not good for the environment so the practice of flaring was stopped. We therefore thought it would be in the country’s best interest to sell it and make some money off it”, she said.

Asked how much money UNOC anticipates to earn from the test crude, Kariisa was non-committal.

“We are working to get the best price possible”, she said.

The Buliisa County Member of Parliament, Hon. Stephen Birahwa Mukitale welcomed the disposal of the crude oil.

“It allays fears and suspicions from people who have been alleging that the oil was already being sold off,” said Hon. Mukitale, whose home is in Kisansya cell, Buliisa Town Council, where Kasemene oil field is located.

Asked about the feeling of the locals about the sale of the crude, Mukitale said the people he represents do not have any issues with it.

“It is procedurally right for government to dispose-off public assets that they are not using. That crude was used for study purposes. The purpose has been achieved”, he said.

He however suggested that such crude could have been used by Ugandan industries as heavy fuel for running heavy duty power generators. He added that the major focus of his constituents who host more than 28 oil wells is the next phase of development and production. They are interested in being aligned with the developments so as to gain more benefits overall.

By Oil in Uganda Correspondent

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Cabinet has approved a local content policy for the oil sector to enable and enhance local competitiveness and employment.

 The Government spokesperson Ofwono Opondo says the consortium of companies that have already been awarded contracts will be required to train Ugandans in short and long-term skills.

Watch the Video Clip below for more information 

 

 

Source: NTV Uganda

 

 

Every year at the HLPF, an annual theme helps an increased focus along with an in-depth review on a selection of SDGs. In 2018, SDG 6 on water and sanitation is one of the goals to be reviewed.

To provide input to Member States on this goal, UN-Water has produced the SDG 6 Synthesis Report 2018 on Water and Sanitation (unedited version available here). This represents a joint position from the UN family on the global status on SDG 6 and other water-related targets. The report also explores the linkages within SDG 6 targets and the interlinkages between SDG 6 and the other targets and indicators. The report builds on the baseline data on SDG 6 global indicators coming from JMP, GEMI and GLAAS.

 
SDG 6 Synthesis Report 2018 on Water and Sanitation (unedited)
Executive summary
Presentations from workshop the SDG 6 Synthesis Report 2018 on Water and Sanitation, 2 May 2018

It is about 36 years since the mining of copper at Kilembe Mines in Kasese district ended. But up to now residents still suffer the consequences of pollution.

A recently released research shows that high levels of metal concentrates including copper, cobalt, nickel, zinc and arsenic remain present in agricultural soils and public water sources.

Researchers from Makerere University believe that the minerals are causing danger not only to the community but livestock and environment. Diseases like cancer and ulcers in the area are attributed to the pollution that was caused by the mining.

Dr Abraham Mwesigye, an environmental toxicologist at the College of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences, Makerere University, found that the mining in western Uganda from 1956 to 1982 left over 15 mountains of waste containing cupriferous and cobaltiferous pyrite dumped within a mountain river valley.

According to the researcher, the waste water was not treated to remove heavy metal, thus exposing the environment to contamination.

Untreated water has found itself into water bodies like Lake George and River Nyamwamba, the main water sources in Kasese and areas around Mpondwe.

Mwesigye released his damning report on June 7 and explained that samples collected from soil, water, foods, forage, sediments and toe nails from local volunteers were analysed at the school of biosciences, Nottingham University, UK.

They found high levels of copper, cobalt, nickel, zinc, arsenic and lead in the soils, water sources, house dust and river sediments.

Beans, yams, cassava, sweet potatoes, maize, ground nuts, bananas and amaranthus vegetables appeared to be accumulating the metals beyond acceptable thresholds for human consumption.

The report further indicates the source of contamination as mine tailings and underground mine water. Aluminum, copper and iron were more abundant in public water sources, he said.

“The food crops and forage grown in these areas contains significantly higher concentrations of copper, cobalt, zinc, possibly taken up during growth and accumulated in the foods, which could lead to consumption of the same elements by local people,” he said.

“We [carried out] tests on human nails from Kilembe area and it confirmed that children ignorantly play in dangerous areas that expose them more than adults to the mine metals, especially copper, cobalt and nickel.”

Effects on man

The consumption of food contaminated with metals can cause cancer, gastro-intestinal complications, a decrease of immunological defenses, physical and mental disabilities and retardation.

The large amounts of soil metals could affect soil productivity. Drinking water is contaminated mainly with cobalt, iron, aluminum and manganese, which exposes the people to heavy metal poisoning.

The dust in peoples’ homes and public buildings especially along the River Nyamwamba valley and downhill of tailing sites could be inhaled or accidentally ingested.

With forage containing large amounts of copper and zinc, these elements could affect animal health and the quality of milk and beef produced in the Kilembe area.

What to do

Mwesigye suggested that there should be enforcement of proper waste storage and disposal protocols, and the local people living in contaminated environments should be sensitised about the dangers, so that they make informed decisions.

Also, there is need for construction of containment all around Kilembe tailing sites and land filling to safeguard the soil.

There is urgent need to treat Kilembe mine underground water before it is discharged into River Nyamwamba; need for remediation activities for soils along River Nyamwamba, he added.

Blue fish

In October 22, 2008, The Observer carried a story about Lake George’s strange greenish-blue fish. Fishermen at one of the landing sites discovered a strange blue fish, which was suspected to have absorbed excess copper.

However, the local authority then responded that there was no research done to prove this claim, noting that the abnormality may have another cause, such as disease.

The then General Manager of Kilembe Mines, Fred Kyakonye Weraga, said that the coloured water discharged from the mines into the lake is green algae, which results from excess mineral nutrients in the water, a phenomenon known as eutrophication.

This phenomenon is also known to be damaging to the sustainability of the fisheries sector. Weraga claimed that copper, being a sulfide does not dissolve in water. He admitted that Kilembe Mines has not done anything to stop solid waste which was extracted from the copper tunnels, being dumped along the nearby valley.

With many homes having been built using sand from the contaminated River Nyamwambaa, there is urgent need for the environment stakeholders to plan and implement mitigation programmes. The option of resettling people living in contaminated areas could also be explored.

 

source: The observer

People have made various suggestions on how Uganda’s oil revenues ,including the Petroleum fund ,should be used. Currently, all oil related revenues are placed in the Petroleum Fund that was established by the Public Finance Management Act, 2015.

According to the Act, all petroleum revenues, which accrue to government, shall be paid into the Petroleum Fund. And management of this fund is placed under the Minister of finance. “The Minister shall be responsible for the overall management of the Petroleum Fund and shall oversee the transfer into and the disbursements from the Petroleum Fund,” reads section 55 (3) of the PFMA.

Uganda is moving closer to the dream of commercializing its huge oil and gas reserves currently at 6.5 billion barrels after years of back and forth delays. The dream is closer to reality after signing a $3 billion deal with a consortium of companies, known as Albertine Graben Refinery to build and operate a 60,000 barrels-a-day refinery.

Uganda also recently hit yet another landmark after agreeing to sign an intergovernmental accord with Tanzania by end of June to speed up construction of the $3.5 billion crude oil export pipeline. With deals for the refinery and pipeline now fully entrenched, oil development is poised for the next big stage that should see Uganda join the league of oil producers.

But amid the pomp and great expectations, Ugandans must prepare for the proper utilisation of oil revenues if we are to cement our place up the developmental ladder and deliver to the common man and woman the transformation that the oil resource promises. One investment that is vital to our economy and to securing our future would be in renewable sources of energy.

Investing in renewable energy to power our country could see us tackle climate change which is a reality today and a major threat to sustainable progress in the country. It will provide cleaner and environmentally friendly energy for industrial purposes, cooking, transport and power generation. 

Although government has tried to develop  Uganda’s renewable energy sector with projects such as Karuma and Isimba dam expected to come on line this year,a lot of the country’s renewable energy potential remains largely untapped. Uganda is richly endowed with renewable energy resources for clean energy production and the provision of energy services. According to the renewable energy policy, the country has a solar electricity potential of about 200MW, 1650MW from biomass, 800MW from peat, 2200MW from hydropower stations and 400MW from geothermal energy.

The total estimated potential is about 5,300 MW. Hydro and biomass are considered to have the largest potential for electricity generation.  Kabaale, Hoima and Kasese districts in western Uganda, where the great rift valley and escarpment are located, have the greatest potential for generating geothermal energy. Overall, if we are to invest in renewable sources of energy we are blessed with a bounty to choose from .

According to statistics from the ministry of energy only 10% of Uganda’s population has access to clean energy and even less than 5% in rural areas .The majority of the population relies on wood fuels inform of wood and charcoal as a main source of energy for cooking which has  led to massive environmental degradation and health hazards among households.

Renewable energy is at the forefront of low-carbon options as its green energy with no adverse effects on the environment unlike oil which is a fossil fuel that contributes to global warming.

 Investing in these renewable energy sources can monumentally benefit Uganda economically. It could see government tackle problems of electricity reliability while decreasing the price of electricity, the cost of doing business in the country and help us realize our industrial potential. We will also have the capacity to indirectly solve problems of youth unemployment and poverty.

Finally, Uganda is signatory to the Paris climate accord and investment in renewables will contribute towards realisation of its commitments. According Uganda’s Intended Nationally Determined Contributions INDCs, the country has committed to a 22 per cent emission cut on a business as usual basis by 2030 in a bid to mitigate and adapt to climate change and transit to a low-carbon climate-resilient economy. Government hopes to do this by increasing renewable energy deployment and achieve a total of at least 3,200 Mega Watts renewable electricity generation capacity by 2030.

The world around Uganda is evolving in such a way that oil has no future in it. Uganda should be planning towards green energy transition.

 

By Diana Taremwa

Extractives Officer

Water Governance Institute

  •  
    Output to begin three years after investment decision is made
  •  
    Oil deposit in Albertine Graben to pump 40,000 barrels a day

 

Cnooc Ltd., the Chinese oil company developing Uganda’s crude finds with Total SA and Tullow Oil Plc, said production at its Kingfisher field will probably start in 2021. 

Cnooc is likely to bring Kingfisher on stream three years after making a final investment decision, expected later in 2018, according to Likun Kuang, finance manager at Cnooc Uganda Ltd. The field is one of several in the Albertine Graben, an area estimated to hold 6.5 billion barrels of oil, where the government is targeting first production in 2020.

Three years is a “reasonable” period to get the Kingfisher development ready, Kuang said in an interview late Wednesday in the western town of Hoima. Cnooc plans to pump 40,000 barrels of crude a day from the field, feeding a planned 60,000-barrel-a-day refinery as well as an export pipeline to the Tanzanian port of Tanga.

Cnooc is developing Kingfisher on behalf of its partners, France’s Total and London-based Tullow. Total is taking the lead at Tilenga, which will have a capacity of 190,000 barrels a day.

 

SOURCE: Bloomberg

 

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