By Guest Writer
Editor, after watching Mr. President Museveni talk recently on the television, I started fearing because of the stories he was talking about in regard to negative impacts of the oil in United Kingdom, Europe, Portugal and others.
The story by Mr. Museveni opened my eye and stared realizing that oil is a big disaster to environment and people’s livelihoods.
However, should be noted that the negative impacts of the oil Europe is experiencing now is likely to take place in Uganda also because the oil companies extracted the oil Europe are the same drilling oil in Uganda with the same technology .
In addition to that most of the oil developments such as oil wells in Uganda are taking place in the critical eco-systems like the shores of Lake Albert and the Murchison National Park.
The East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) is also expected to pass through the sensitive biodiversity’s such as forest reserves, rivers, game reserves and wetlands and others.
This means that possibility of Uganda to experience the scenarios happening in Europe is high because most of the oil activities are taking place in the sensitive biodiversity’s.
The EACOP is expected to pass through ten districts in Uganda. It is a 1443km crude oil export pipeline from Kabaale –Hoima in Uganda to the chongoleani peninsular near Tanga port in Tanzania.
In my opinion, the oil activities should stop in Uganda because when the oil spills happens, they will get mixed with water since most of the oil projects such EACOP and oil wells are taking place near and through the water bodies.
When this happens, the aquatic life is likely to lose their lives and people using the water mixed with the oil spills are also like to develop some diseases like cancer, plants will dry up and the soil will also burnt.
The country should know that even Europe which is rich and with a lot of technology failed to manage the negative impacts of the oil in their country, What about Uganda which is poor and having less technology to handle the negative impacts of the oil.
This means that Uganda is likely to suffer a lot of problems resulting from oil. The country needs to do away with oil completely because the country is already facing the serious climatic changes. The extraction of the oil is likely to worsen it.
For several years, Uganda has been doing well without oil. This means that it is not only the oil which can make the country rich.
Uganda can still become very rich when they invest much in the green economies such as tourism which contribute to 7.7% of GDP and create about 667600 jobs to Ugandans that oil sector which is expected to provide 160000 jobs to the population, Agriculture which employs 80% of the population and forestry.
In addition to that, the government should also invest much in Africa energy such as solar energy, wind and hydroelectricity which will reduce the pressures on the critical eco-systems for firewood.
The above activities should considered much because they environmentally friendly.
Therefore I call upon the government of Uganda to stop investing the oil activities because they have a lot of negative impacts on environment and people’s livelihoods.
The author is Kato Paul, EACOP affected person in Kikuube district Bunyoro Sub Region.
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