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What can be done about it

Sera Whippy
Monday, March 07, 2011

A HOLISTIC approach is the best strategy to saving our environment, says an expert.

Having an integrated approach to the management of land, water and living resources would lead to promote conservation and sustainable use in an equitable way, said Doctor Piet Wit.

Dr Pit of the IUCN Commission on Ecosystem Management said a holistic perspective was the environmentally sustainable way forward.

Three areas of focus Dr Piet highlighted were resource bases, resource management and resource uses.

"They can also be referred to as the physical, institutional and socio-economical entities," said Dr Piet.

The physical factors include the soil and soil fertility, climate and weather, geology and geomorphology plus the hydrology and the geohydrology make up the abiotic factors. As for the biotic factors these include the flora and vegetation along with the fauna and humans.

The second is the socio-economic factors which include extractive uses like land-based systems and water systems.

The non-extractive uses are conservation practices and nature protection, tourism and recreation, scientific research and cultural use.

"The third and last factor is the institutional one," Dr Piet said.

"These include modern State representations, traditional authorities, moral authorities, economic powers and the international community.

"So in a holistic manner we may be able to effectively and efficiently conserve and preserve our ecosystems from further degradation."

Fellow IUCN committee member Doctor Ed Barrow said it would be difficult to point a finger at who would be the main entity carrying out the task.

"Who will do it? The government? The private sector, the communities, the villagers, the stakeholder? Who?" said Dr Barrow.

"Only a holistic approach is the best way to tackle the problem."





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