Pollution Control 2020- Urban expansion and its impact on peri-urban household: The case of Gelan and Dukem Towns, Ethiopia- Mesfin Nigussie Ibido- Nanjing Agricultural University | Abstract
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Pollution Control 2020- Urban expansion and its impact on peri-urban household: The case of Gelan and Dukem Towns, Ethiopia- Mesfin Nigussie Ibido- Nanjing Agricultural University

Author(s): Mesfin Nigussie Ibido

Rapid urbanization, population pressure and the governmental, shelter, infrastructural, industrial and commercial needs of a fast growing city have stretched the land delivery system in different parts of the country. Agricultural lands, which serves as the main source of livelihood, has been encroached by the process. This paper seeks to assess the impact of rapid urbanization on agricultural lands and its impact on the livelihood of the peri-urban farmers the case of Gelan and Dukem towns. The research used a mixture of qualitative and quantitative methods including interviews and questionnaires to collect and analyze data from stakeholders in selected peri urban areas in the study area. Contrary to the mainstream view that the polygamous nature of these two towns are the main source of increment in the population and thus urbanization in the area, stakeholders’ perception was different as a result of increased commercial activities and its strategic location. The pressures of urbanization have negative implications on predominantly poor farming societies in the area through the lens of political ecology. Besides the results show that land grabbing projects, said to aim at stimulating economic and social development, have resulted in dispossessions, injustices and environmental conflicts where in indigenous communities have been deeply affected. Thus the government should focus towards the protection of prime agricultural lands that serves as main sources of livelihood for majority. Urbanization is necessary only with adequate compensation for the displaced group but not to the extent of denying the rural folks of their main source of livelihood and placed them to under poverty line.

Keywords: Agriculture, land, Towns, Gelan and Dukem, Urbanization

Background of the Research

Urbanization is worldwide phenomena that emphasize the process of both vertical and horizontal physical expansion of urban area. It is predominantly the process by which towns and cities are formed and become larger gradually as more people begin living and working in central areas (Satterthwaite,2015). According to United Nations projection, it is predicted that, by 2050 about 64% of the developing world and 86% of the developed world will be urbanized. This implies that it is approximately equivalent to three billion urbanites by 2050, lots of which will occur in Africa and Asia (United Nations, 2012). Even though urbanization in most developing countries is associated with complicated problem, it can offer a number of opportunities for better living standard (Aggrey, 2013).

Ethiopia is the second most populous country in the African with 107 million inhabitants (UN, 2017). It is one of the least urbanized country in the world where 19.7% of its population living in urban center (UN, 2018). In Ethiopia, as in several other African countries, urbanization is increasing in alarming rate and the competition for land between agriculture and non -agriculture is becoming intense in the peri -urban areas. According to official figures from the Ethiopian Central Statistics Agency, the urban population is projected to nearly triple from 15.2 million in 2012 to 42.3 million in 2037, growing at3.8 percent a year and the rate of urbanization will be even faster, at about 5.4 percent a year. This expansion open door for land grabbing both by government and private body.

Urbanization in Gelan and Dukem towns are in a state of rapid horizontal expansion from time to time. This will have far-reaching ecological, socio-economic, and environmental consequences, especially to the urban fringe areas. Particularly, the main challenge of the urbanization process in the study area is the rapid conversion of a large amount of prime agricultural land to urban land uses (both residential and industrial construction) in the peri-urban areas. It can affect the unavailability of prime agricultural land and consequently exposes for low agricultural productivity and low standard of living (Francis, 2013; Efa and Gutema, 2017). Hence, a better understanding of the spatial and temporal dynamics of urban growth and its impact on the small-scale farmer’s life in the study area is required. Since the study area (Gelan and Dukem) is a strategic area for investment both by government and nongovernment organization, the demand of land for urban development program increases rapidly with non-existent urbanization process. In response to these, the government is taking large tracts from peri-urban areas. As a result, large numbers of local landholders who mainly engage in agricultural activity for their livelihood

have been forced to lose their land rights. Thus, this study is mainly designed to investigate the impact of urbanization on the livelihood of the peri-urban farm household and compensation they received from government while displaced from their farm land.

Research Methodology

Description of the Study Area

This research was conducted in the Oromia special zone surrounding Addis Ababa, Oromia National Regional state, Ethiopia. Oromia special zone surrounding Addis ababa the capital of the country) is one of the zone in Oromia regional state. The administrative center of this zone is found in Addis Ababa. The zone bounded in the North by North Showa zone, in the East by East Showa zone, in the South by South West Showa and in the West by West Showa zone. The zone geographically lies between 80 30’ 00''- 09019' 05'' N Latitude and 38021’45'' - 390 10’ 54'' E Longitude in the great rift valley of Ethiopia (zone agriculture office, 2019).


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