NEMA

NEMA names Nairobi best in environmental conservation

In Summary

• Nema's Environmental Performance Index (EPI) indicates that Nairobi is at 75.5%, emerging as the best performing county.

• The county topped despite unsuccessful efforts from the county government to clean-up the Nairobi River.

A National Youth Service bulldozer is pictured at the Nairobi River bank near the Globe Cinema roundabout, days after it was swept by flood waters, April 20, 2018. /COLLINS LANGAT
A National Youth Service bulldozer is pictured at the Nairobi River bank near the Globe Cinema roundabout, days after it was swept by flood waters, April 20, 2018. /COLLINS LANGAT

The National Environmental Authority has put Nairobi county at the top of the list for conservation.

Nema's Environmental Performance Index (EPI) indicates that Nairobi is at 75.5%, emerging as the best performing county.

The report highlights the improvement in the management of energy and natural resources, improved access to safe drinking water, low air pollution from wood fuel which is at 2%, 93% tree cover retention and high literacy levels.

The report has however recommended more attention to sanitation, wastewater treatment and more expenditure on environment-related issues.

“The county is on the right track but needs to invest in upgrading the sanitation system, water storage and management and wastewater management,” part of the report reads.

The county topped despite unsuccessful efforts from the county government to clean-up the Nairobi River.

Governor Sonko had called on security agencies in Nairobi to conduct a 24- hour surveillance along the river to curb the increased cases of murder and dumping of bodies.

According to the report, the top five top performing sectors in matters environment in the county include; mainstreaming of climate change in the County Integrated Development Plan (CIDP), achieving 95% of zero risk to human health, adhering to international standards of nitrogen efficiency use in Agriculture and ensuring low spread of dangerous species.

Some of the shortcomings as indicated in the report include high carbon dioxide emissions, unprotected marine areas, inadequate water treatment plans and low access to solid waste disposal systems.

The report shows that 25% of the city population is still using paraffin, 81% have access to safe drinking water, while 78% have access to improved sanitation services.

The solid waste segment shows that 80% have access to waste disposal dumpsites but puts access to sewer lines at 49%.

Governor Mike Sonko said the county will invest more in the environment, water and sanitation sector to work on the recommendations put forward.

“When we took over in 2017, we focused more on garbage collection, beautification of the city and rehabilitation of dumpsites into recreational sites. We want to double our efforts and focus more on sewer and solid waste management,” Sonko said.

This year, the county has allocated Sh3 billion to the sector and the governor expects that sanitation levels will increase, access to sewer lines will be improved and garbage collection will be done promptly.

Recently, NEMA closed several companies in Nairobi for discharging untreated waste into the rivers.

Sameer Agriculture and Livestock Limited was closed for discharging untreated wastewater straight to the public sewerage