Pastoralism pays: evidence from the Horn
In a Briefing from CELEP member IIED (International Institute for Environment and Development) entitled “Pastoralism pays: new evidence from the Horn of Africa” (2015), Caroline King-Okumu, Oliver Wasonga and Eshetu Yimer have summarised findings from field studies on pastoralism by university students.
As competition for land and water resources intensifies, there is a need to re-evaluate the comparative social and environmental advantages of extensive pastoral systems. Nine studies of hard-to-reach pastoral areas in Ethiopia and Kenya reaffirm that the true value of pastoral systems is largely overlooked. Camel milk, goat meat, draught power and other goods and services provide subsistence products and household income; they also create employment, income opportunities and access to credit along their value chains. Pastoral products contribute significant revenues to public authorities and support the provision of basic services in rural towns; with appropriate support, this productivity could grow.