Edited by Albert Breton, Giorgio Brosio, Silvana Dalmazzone and Giovanna Garrone
Chapter 5: Ethiopia: Protecting Nature in a Developing Decentralized Country
Gedion Asfaw, Kiﬂe Lemma Woldesemayat and Sebsebe Demissew 1. INTRODUCTION Ethiopia is located between 3º and 15ºN latitudes and 33º and 48ºE longitudes, with an area of 1.1 million km2. It has immense geographical and ecological diversity. It is richly endowed with natural resources such as ﬂora, fauna, minerals and water. It is primarily an agrarian country. 2. 2.1 INSTITUTIONAL BACKGROUND The Federal Level Ethiopia, a parliamentary democracy, has a federal system based on nine regional states (hereafter regions) constructed on the basis of the settlement patterns, language, identity and consent of the concerned communities in Articles 45, 46, 47 of the Federal Constitution (Proclamation No. 1, 1995). The federal and the regional governments each have a legislative, an executive and a judicial branch. Regional councils have the power to legislate on matters falling under their jurisdiction. They also have the power to draft, adopt and amend their constitutions. In addition to the overall mandate of the federal government to formulate and implement policies, strategies and plans in respect of economic, social and development matters, there are distinct provisions in the Federal Constitution which assign responsibilities for natural resources to the federal government. These include the protection and preservation of cultural and historical heritage and utilization and conservation of land and other natural resources. The federal government also has jurisdiction on the utilization of the water of rivers and other water bodies situated across two or more regions, or crossing the national boundaries (Article 51). In addition,...
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