Chipata, June 20, 2019, ZANIS---Chief Mnukwa of the Ngoni people of Chipangali district in Eastern Province has urged the department of forestry to work with traditional leaders in curbing charcoal burning which he said is depleting trees in rural areas.

Chief Mnukwa noted that the department is the one that gives permits allowing charcoal burners to cut trees without considering the quantities of trees in the forest.

ZANIS reports from Chipata that the traditional leader said traditional leaders should be allowed to suggest where the cutting down of trees can be done with regard to the number of trees in their areas.

He observed that there has been an increase in charcoal burning due to load shedding by ZESCO and that most people have no alternative means of heating their food apart from using  charcoal.

Chief Mnukwa observed that trees have already been depleted in urban areas hence charcoal burners have now gone to rural areas.

He said this situation could lead to a devastating impact on climate change if not well managed.

The traditional leader noted that charcoal burning is getting more attractive due to high prices of the commodity on the market.