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Concern Over Nairobi’s Shrinking Green Spaces

Most recently, there was uproar over the construction of a raised highway. This resulted in the felling of hundreds of trees, though protests managed to save the life of one 100-year-old fig tree. It was also proposed that part of the highway run through Uhuru Park – one of the city’s few recreational parks. Protests successfully diverted the highway to the park’s outskirts, but development still threatens the city’s few undeveloped spaces. To give an idea of how much green space has already been lost, between 1976 and 2000, Nairobi’s forest cover went from 14% to 3%. Bushland cover, over the same period, was also reduced from 22% to 13%. This will have an impact on the city’s wildlife and livestock. Nairobi, like other urban environments in the tropics, has an ecosystem that includes wildlife – such as birds, rodents, primates – and livestock such as cattle, goats, sheep and pigs. As green spaces are lost, native wildlife and bird species can dwindle and non-native species proliferate.

SOURCE: THE CONVERSATION

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