Proponent: Jumbo Charcoal Namibia (Pty) Ltd
Status: Approval Obtained, Open for Public Participation
Jumbo views the ‘invader bush’ as a resource, which, if effectively managed, can increase the overall productivity of a farm (the unit). The fact that bush encroachment is responsible for loss of productivity is also recognized. Thinning out encroacher species therefore has many benefits, including:
- Improved farm productivity – well managed bush thinning will result in more grass available for grazing
- Increased water availability – reducing tree cover increases water available for grass and other species with shallow root systems and leaves water available for groundwater recharge
- Increased biodiversity – a mix of vegetation types provides habitat for wider variety of species
Bush thinning and charcoaling activities can potentially result in adverse environmental impacts. Key impacts are:
- Reduced soil quality through erosion after vegetation clearance;
- Disturbance to flora and fauna through bush thinning activities;
- Temporary loss habitat and thus reduction in biodiversity; and
- Increased surface runoff during rainfall events leading to reduced surface water quality and soil erosion.
A range of beneficial impacts can also arise, including:
- Improved rangelands leading to increased productivity;
- Job creation;
- Increased skills;
- Eradication of invasive species; and
- Increased silvicultural ecosystems and carrying capacity.
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