Nestle Waters Ethiopia to pursue Sululta watershed project
The Oromia Regional State,the Water and Land Resource Center (WLRC) of the Addis Ababa University and Nestle Waters Ethiopia have launched phase two of the Integrated Landscape Management Project (ILMP) on Wednesday 16, 2019 in Sheraton Hotel.
Phasetwoof ILMP which is scheduled to be executed from 2018 to 2023 is about managing and coordinating landscape management plan and implementation in Oromia Regional State in collaboration with all stake holders.
At the symposium, the findings of the socio-economic and bio-physical baseline study and the integrated landscape management proposal have been presented to stakeholders. The study was carried out during phase one of the project, from October 2016 to 2018, dedicated to the analysis of the biophysical and socio-economic situations to identify the prevailing challenges and opportunities towards informing the design ofthe ILMP project.
Based on the outputs, some of the recommended actions include development of organic farming, green recreational areas and improvement of access to water and sanitation, and other income generating activities.
Since 2016, Nestle Waters Ethiopia has entered a long term partnership with Water and Land Resource Center (WLRC) to develop the Project. The objective is to empower local communities, authorities and industries to undertake a sustainable water resource management. The program follows a two phase approach.
Meanwhile, the Project also includes the plantation of high-value fruits and vegetables which will substitute some 70 percent of vegetables that is shipped from Addis Ababa toSululta. And the project seeks to reverse this trend.
The Project requires USD 70 million to complete with the contributions from WLRC and the private sector expected as well. Around 20 percent of the budget is allocated for the development of green recreational areas which can be developed by a potential private sector operator through stricter environmental regulations.
The upper Sululta watershed, being at the edge of the expanding Addis Ababa metropolitan, is transforming into an urban settlement.
According to Addis Ababa University Water and Land Resource Center expert,GeteZeleke(PhD),“This urbanization trend could impact the watershed, communities, and the climate unless a long term plan ensures sustainable co-existence of human activity with water resource management.”
Nestle Waters Ethiopia is a joint venture between Nestle Waters and owners of Abyssinia Springs formed in May 2016. The company has taken a majority share in the joint venture and is managing Great Abyssinia bottle water business. Nonetheless, Nestle water Ethiopia is the first alliance for water stewardship certified bottling facility in Africa.