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Location Ethiopia, Africa
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Keywords Countries
Published by Phil Green
Published 2014
License CC BY-SA 4.0
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Ethiopia, officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, is a country in the Horn of Africa, and is the most populous landlocked country in the world. It shares borders with Eritrea and Djibouti to the north, Somaliland to the northeast, Somalia to the east, Kenya to the south, South Sudan to the west and Sudan to the northwest. Ethiopia has a total area of 1,100,000 square kilometres (420,000 sq mi) and over 117 million inhabitants and is the 12th-most populous country in the world and the 2nd-most populous in Africa. The national capital and largest city, Addis Ababa, lies several kilometres west of the East African Rift that splits the country into the African and Somali tectonic plates.

Environment quality[edit | edit source]

Food activism[edit | edit source]

Solar cooking resources in Ethiopia

Rural sustainability[edit | edit source]

Roots Up

News and comment[edit | edit source]

2019

Forum Discusses Four Potential Scenarios for Ethiopia's Future, Dec 3 [1]

Ethiopia 'breaks' tree-planting record to tackle climate change, Jul 29 [2]

2017

Heating with coffee to prevent deforestation, Jan 5 [3]

2015

With sub-Sahara Africa's largest wind farm, Ethiopia makes big push to be green super power, June 28 [4]

Ethiopia to cut carbon emissions by two-thirds by 2030, June 11 [5]

2013

Empowering Communities in Ethiopia, by Suzanne York, Apr 4 [6]

2010

"Gibe III dam will be a disaster of cataclysmic proportions for the tribes of the Omo valley",[7] March 23

2009

Ethiopia was a particpant of the United Nations Environment Programme's Climate Neutral Network

Ethiopia was the first African country to join the Climate Neutral Network. While the nation is not a net contributor to global greenhouse gas emissions, it has expressed its commitment to mitigating climate change.

Ethiopia is an active supporter of UNEP's Billion Tree Campaign, contributing more trees than any other nation - over one billion - towards the global target of planting seven billion trees by the crucial UN climate change conference in December 2009. Furthermore, through Ethiopian Electric Power Corporation, the Government is distributing 5.4 million compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) - commonly known as "energy savers" - country-wide to help consumers save money on electricity bills and reduce their carbon footprint.[8] June 5

Environmental issues[edit | edit source]

As in many neighboring countries, most environmental issues in Ethiopia relate to deforestation and endangered species.

Ethiopia had a 2018 Forest Landscape Integrity Index mean score of 7.16/10, ranking it 50th globally out of 172 countries.

Deforestation in Ethiopia is to locals clearing forests for their personal needs, such as for fuel, hunting, agriculture, and at times for religious reasons. The main causes of deforestation in Ethiopia are shifting agriculture, livestock production and fuel in drier areas.

Development challenges[edit | edit source]

In the 1970s and 1980s, Ethiopia experienced civil war and communist purges which hindered its economy but it has since recovered and, as of 2010, has the largest economy by GDP in East Africa. However, it remains one of the world's poorest countries, facing poverty, hunger, corruption, weak infrastructure, poor respect for human rights, and limited access to health and education, with a literacy rate of only 49%, ranking it in the worst quartile on the Human Development Index. W

Rural and urban life[edit | edit source]

Migration to urban areas is usually motivated by the hope of better lives. In peasant associations daily life is a struggle to survive. About 16% of the population in Ethiopia are living on less than one dollar per day (2008). Only 65% of rural households in Ethiopia consume the World Health Organization's minimum standard of food per day (2,200 kilocalories), with 42% of children under 5 years old being underweight.

Most poor families (75%) share their sleeping quarters with livestock, and 40% of children sleep on the floor, where nighttime temperatures average 5 degrees Celsius in the cold season. The average family size is six or seven, living in a 30 square metre mud and thatch hut, with less than two hectares of land to cultivate.

The peasant associations face a cycle of poverty. Since the landholdings are so small, farmers cannot allow the land to lie fallow, which reduces soil fertility. This land degradation reduces the production of fodder for livestock, which causes low milk yields. Since the community burns livestock manure as fuel, rather than plowing the nutrients back into the land, the crop production is reduced. The low productivity of agriculture leads to inadequate incomes for farmers, hunger, malnutrition and disease. These unhealthy farmers have difficulty working the land and the productivity drops further.

Although conditions are drastically better in cities, all of Ethiopia suffers from poverty and poor sanitation. However, poverty in Ethiopia fell from 44% to 29.6% during 2000–2011, according to the World Bank. In the capital city of Addis Ababa, 55% of the population used to live in slums. Now, however, a construction boom in both the private and the public sector has led to a dramatic improvement in living standards in major cities, particularly in Addis Ababa. Notably, government-built condominium housing complexes have sprung up throughout the city, benefiting close to 600,000 individuals. Sanitation is the most pressing need in the city, with most of the population lacking access to waste treatment facilities. This contributes to the spread of illness through unhealthy water.

Despite the living conditions in the cities, the people of Addis Ababa are much better off than people living in the peasant associations owing to their educational opportunities. Unlike rural children, 69% of urban children are enrolled in primary school, and 35% of those are eligible to attend secondary school. Addis Ababa has its own university as well as many other secondary schools. The literacy rate is 82%.

Many NGOs (Non-Governmental Organizations) are working to solve this problem; however, most are far apart, uncoordinated, and working in isolation. The Sub-Saharan Africa NGO Consortium is attempting to coordinate efforts.


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External links[edit | edit source]

Wikipedia: Ethiopia, Environmental issues in Ethiopia

References[edit | edit source]