KARI- Baseline Survey Report Narok District 2007

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Kenya Agricultural Research Institute
In Kenya, land degradation and desertification are serious environmental as well as socio-economic problems. Over 80% of the total land surface is classified as Arid and Semi-Arid Land (ASAL), with some 8 - 10 million people, or approximately 30% of the Kenyan population. Around 60% of the ASAL inhabitants live below the poverty line (subsisting on < one dollar a day) higher than the 50% of the country average and are adversely affected by land degradation, desertification and drought. Whilst the majority of the population are pastoralists and agro-pastoralists, farming communities have migrated into the dry lands from high and medium potential areas, which has influenced changes in land-use, subsistence economies and lifestyles. The ASALs conjure up an image of barren unproductive lands, not worthy of development investments; and for many years these areas and their residents have been marginalized politically, socially and economically. Past development initiatives in ASALs have been characterized by: 1) inappropriate policies, 2) changes in traditional ways of life, 3) increasing pressure on the natural resource base, 4) security and conflict problems, and 5) poor provision of services