Effects of Oil Extraction on the Livelihoods Vulnerability in Lokichar-Kochodin Basin, Turkana County, Kenya
Cheptoo, Kirui Agnes
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Discovery of oil in South Lokichar-Kochodin Basin (SLKB) in Turkana County, Kenya, in 2012, subsequent exploration and extraction, provided opportunity to assess the nature of vulnerability to displacement and impoverishment, particularly among the pastoral communitiies in arid and semi-arid regions. This study assessed the effects of the exploration and extraction of crude oil on displacement and the vulnerability of the livelihoods. Specific objectives of the study were to; examine the nature of the vulnerability of the livelihoods, assess the nature of oil-induced displacement, examine the effects of the oil dispcement on the vulnerability of the livelihood, assess the narure of recovery and to examine the nature of the compensation. Informed by the theory of vulnerability, impoverishment and displacement (VID), the study was basically a survey design. The location of the study was South Lochikar-Kochodin Basin (SLKB) in the Turkana County targeting 14,713 households. A sample size of 426 was determined using the Yamane (1967) formula. Individual households were drawn through systematic sampling with use of two registers (one from Lokichar location and one from Kochodin location). Data were collected through key informant interviews (KII), focus group discussions (FGD) and a survey questionnaire. Descriptive and Inferential analayis inform of regression was performed. As in most parts of Turkana County, SLKB was largely arid and semi-arid region where livelihoods were based largely on livestock production. Around 78% of the households lived within the margins of the chronic poverty (KES 117 per day or $ 1) and experienced varied forms of the vulnerability of livelihoods. The land tenure in SLKB and most parts of the Turkana County remained a community land; accessible to local members of the community and held in trust by the County Government. The study established that 53% of the households had lost some part of access to land because of exploration and extraction of oil, 42% had witnessed reduced livestock, and 38% had experienced extensive and severe reduction of access to water sources. Reports indicated that by 2018, a total of 700 square kilometers of community land had been curved out to support exploration of oil and gas, extraction, and related infrastructure. The study also established that 42% of increased severity of poverty was driven by oil related impoverishment and displacement and was significant at the probability of error less than 0.001. Out of the seven indicators of impoverishment and displacement, the key drivers were 1) excised/reduced land (Beta=0.482), 2) pasture (Beta=0.236) and 3) family support (Beta=0.174). The study established that 31% of the recovery (new settlement, access to new opportunities) were associated with the socioeconomic endowment (resilience) of the households; which was significant at the probability of error less than 0.001.The study established that there had been limited stakeholder engagement characterized by a number of critical challenges such as limited plan, limited information, limited education, inadequate compensation (even at the pilot stage), and multiplicity of stakeholders (i.e. national government, local government, council of elders and the households). The study recommended strengthening measures to accelerate human resource development and socio-economic capacity (resilience), to improve agro-pastoral production, to enforce registration of the community land based on the Land Registration Act (2012) and the Community Land Act (2016), 4) to re-start negotiation of the compensation and resettlemt directed to building the economic endowment (resilience) of the local (indigenous) population.