Compiled by Zvaitwa Katsidzira-ZIDAWU Youth Forum.
Young people continue to be punished as
they have to live with the consequences of environmental degradation. Youth
will not only suffer now but in the future as adults. Not only environmental
degradation but also pollution and poor waste disposal are consequences being
faced by the youth, especially those living in places like Chiadzwa, Marange
and Arda Transau where mineral extraction is taking place. There is need for environmental
and climate justice, not only for the current generation but for the future
generations too. Youth can be the central actors in fostering change and
adopting to an environmentally friendly lifestyle.
Following the field visit to Arda Transau fom the 4th to the 5th of June 2021, focusing on the My Planet My Right Campaign. As ZIDAWU youth we managed to participate in the national cleanup campaign which takes place every first Friday of every month. As youth we cleaned the community including the school and hospital premises while also taking time to raise awareness among youth and on the benefits of keeping their environment clean and safe from harm. It was an interesting experience as we were able to sensitise and meet other youth who are involved in mining, making them aware of the importance of the My Planet My Right Campaign.
Problems youth are
facing in Arda Transau
Mining activities seem to be taking place
near Wellington primary school and this poses great danger to the school
children as they might fall into the pits left open. The future for these
children is destroyed and these pits and open grounds pave way for disasters to
occur which also pose a great danger to the school.
being trapped in open pits and reduced
land for agriculture leading to hunger and starvation mostly related to land
water pollution and poor waste disposal
spaces for parasites eg mosquitoes
especially caused by poor waste disposal, land degradation and water pollution.
breeding ground for air borne diseases, skin irritation, influenza,
asthma and TB.
What an individual can do
Educating artisanal miners on the
importance of sustainable mining in their operations.
Practice Reforestation as individuals, communities and mining
Fill in open pits.
Protect of water sources.
What ZIDAWU can do.
Participate in the campaign and promote environmental rights
Promote sustainable natural resource management.
Spearhead issues to do with the environment
Community sensitization on the importance of ECR and
encouraging policy makers to ensure these issues become part of the curriculum.
Where ZELA can chip in
into current environmental issues,
production of the reports on Environment reporting
those who are posing harm to the environment