Green Legacy, Basin Dev’t Blessings to Downstream Countries, Neighbors: Water & Energy Minister


July 07 , 2022 (ENA) Ethiopia’s Green Legacy Initiative and watershed development activities have brought blessings to the low riparian countries and neighboring countries, Water and Energy Minister Habtamu Itefa told ENA.

Ethiopia is working to protect the environment and withstand the effects of climate change that has been making significant changes in water resource development.

According to the minister, Ethiopia’s Green Legacy Initiative and related conservation activities are blessings not only to Ethiopia but also to the lower downstream countries and neighboring nations.

The Green Legacy Initiative is strengthening the water sources of Ethiopia, including trans-boundary rivers, and creating green environment that can withstand drought.  

However, the downstream countries are trying to hinder Ethiopia’s effort to use its natural resource, including the construction of the GERD, instead of looking at the positive progresses, Habtamu stressed.  

“The main reason for their plot stems from their reluctance to see Ethiopia alleviating poverty and improving the livelihood of its citizens.”

Ethiopia is constructing the dam by exercising its right to use the water without harming other countries, the minister underscored.

The countries should therefore be aware of the fact that the fall of water level on Nile River occurs due to climate change or lack of  rainfall, the minister stated, adding this is not a man-made phenomenon in the hands of Ethiopia but a natural phenomenon.

The countries need to understand the effects of climate change on river levels and work together with Ethiopia through protecting the environment, Habtamu noted.

Ethiopia’s development work on trans-boundary rivers, including the Nile River, should thus be understood as an initiative carried out not to harm other countries, the minister underscored.

He further noted that Ethiopia has the right to develop and use its water resources to power its industries and create jobs.

The negative path some countries are taking on Ethiopia’s use of its water resource, instead of supporting the development activities, will not benefit them, the minister elaborated, adding that the Green Legacy Initiative is a model for other countries.

Ethiopia has planted 18 billion tree seedlings in the past three successive rainy seasons and is  planting over 6 billion saplings this rainy season.