• Rapid population growth, Uganda experiences a high population of 34.4 million people and the increasing population in areas such as kigezi, Mbale, Bugishu has led to high demand for land for settlement thus destroying forests like Mabira, Kibale, mt. Elgon forests, etc.

  • Forests are major sources of biomass in form of fire wood and charcoal especially in rural areas. This has led to cutting down forests like Mabira, Bugongo and Maramagambo.
  • The increasing demand for timber for furniture, building and construction has led to clearing parts of Kibale forest, Kalinju and Budongo which are accessible.
  • Burning of forests especially by hunters, farmers and grazers has destroyed Mwenge forest reserve, mt. Rwenzori forests and Luwero forests. Also many hectares of forests of Aber and Opit in Gulu were burnt in 1982 by locals.
  • Ignorance of the people especially in the rural areas like in Kibale and Kigezi, who have inadequate knowledge about the value of forests. Such simply destroy forests because they look at them as obstacles to more meaningful land use.
  • Corruption in the forest department in form of bribes, illegal sale of timber, illegal lumbering, thus clearing mostly soft wood trees like Mafuga.

  • Political insecurity where forests have been cleared to check on insecurity like in 1980s Luwero forests were cut down, Nyamityobora forest in Mbarara, etc for security reasons.
  • Limited resources invested in the forest department leading to inefficient equipments used, limited rangers, wardens and other staff to monitor forests and reduce on encroachment on forests like Mabira, Budongo and others.
  • Pests and diseases which have led to clearing forests to destroy tsetse flies like in southern Busoga, Bunya forest in Mayuge and kibale forests.
  • Over grazing of both domestic and wild animals like kadama forest reserves, Timu and Morongole in Karamoja area. Also Aber and Agwata forests are facing illegal grazing by the Iteso pastoralists.
  • The use of traditional and rudimentary tools in felling trees like axes and pangas has caused deforestation. Foristance Mafuga and Muko forest reserve have been destroyed by felling immature trees.

  • The need for more land for cultivation like Bugala forest was cut down by BIDCO to plant palm oil trees, and Kakira and Lugazi sugar estates cleared part of Mabira forest for sugar cane plantations.
  • Industrial establishment where forests are cut down to provide land for industrial set up like in Namanve and to get fire wood for tea processing in Ankole tea estate, firing bricks in Butende and Uganda clays in Kajjansi.
  • Mining activities foristance gold mining in kitaka-kamwenge, Buhweju-Bushenyi has led to clearing of forests in such areas for the activity.


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