Rwanda’s capital city Kigali is expected to be home to a 134 hectare urban park in the city’s biggest valley in 2020 specifically the Nyandungu Urban Wetland Eco-Tourism Park which will conserve wetlands and habitat for wildlife while providing walking and cycling trails, fish ponds and botanical gardens for residents and tourists commissioned by Francesco La Camera of the Italian Ministry of Environment Land and Sea.
According to Faustin Munyazikwiye, Deputy Director at Rwanda’s Environment Management Authority, the new park portrays Rwanda’s vision that preserving natural ecosystems is a win-win situation while speaking on the sidelines of African Green Growth Forum 2018 and added by saying that the government wants to restore the area’s flora and birds for the benefit of researchers, residents and tourists.
The project will cost four-million-dollars with support from Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) which is an inter-governmental organization focused on green economic growth, and the Government of Italy. The latter has contributed 1.3 million dollars while the rest is being raised through Rwanda’s Green Fund that manages the country’s environmental projects.
“We want to facilitate all the goals the Rwandan government has for sustainable green growth,” said La Camera during the Forum and with Rwanda’s ambition be a 100 percent carbon emission free country in the coming decades, they are willing to do anything proven by the decade-old law banning plastic bags; the new Bugesera airport, the first green airport in Africa; Enviroserve Rwanda, an e-waste recycling plant; among others and GGGI has been a part of this in terms of advice and planning.
Green growth involves the creation green jobs, the reduction of green house gas emissions, increased access to clean affordable energy, sustainable public transport, improved sanitation, and sustainable waste management. It also means improved air quality, adequate supply of ecosystem services and enhanced adaptation to climate change.
“We have been helping the Rwandan and Italian Governments build the concept and fund the Nyandungu project,” Ogbonnaya said. “The idea is to find projects that show that green growth has a positive impact.”
“I think for Rwanda and other countries, there should be a goal of 100 percent renewable energy or even going to net or zero emission,” said Frank Rijsberman, GGGI Director General.“Countries should move towards 100 percent electric transportation which soon will be the cheapest form of transport.” GGGI is partnering with other countries like Ethiopia, Senegal and Mozambique.
However, Rwanda still needs about $400 to 600 million dollars to implement its Green Growth and Climate Resilience Strategy including the implementation of green cities and green agriculture which will result increasing green jobs among others.
This really good news coming from Rwanda, really good progress for a small East Africa country.