Who should account for emissions from overseas military training bases? UK defence planners say Kenya must deal with pollution from army manoeuvres
Five decades after it won independence from Britain, Kenya’s colonial past continues to threaten its ability to pursue its own climate agenda.
Documents seen by Climate Home show that a UK military base located in rural Kenya could jeopardise ambitious climate targets set by the local government.
The training base in Laikipia county, which hosts up to six infantry battalions per year, is one of the main British defence assets in Kenya.
The British Army Training Unit Kenya (BATUK) is part of a number of military operations which, according to local civil society organisations, are part of the unfortunate colonial legacy that to date remains alive in the country.
One of the 47 counties in Kenya, Laikipia stands out for its commitment to fight climate change. The county is a member of the Under2 coalition, a group of 165 jurisdictions spanning 33 countries and six continents.
As part of this the local government has promised to scale up the use of efficient cookstoves and solar technology, increase afforestation and ramp up waste management in the three major urban centers by 2020.
Laikipia is also establishing a new measurement system for its fossil fuels usage and emissions. But officials say greenhouse gases produced by the 10,000 troops rotating through for training and more than 1,000 vehicles, helicopters and jet aircrafts cannot be measured.
The supporting document submitted to the Under2 program highlights this lack of transparency and raises an important issue –…