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Environment Statistics and Accounts in Botswana; a glimpse into Central Statistics Office- Environment Unit Kakanyo Fani Dintwa Central Statistics Office,

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Presentation on theme: "Environment Statistics and Accounts in Botswana; a glimpse into Central Statistics Office- Environment Unit Kakanyo Fani Dintwa Central Statistics Office,"— Presentation transcript:


2 Environment Statistics and Accounts in Botswana; a glimpse into Central Statistics Office- Environment Unit Kakanyo Fani Dintwa Central Statistics Office, Ministry of Finance and Development Planning Gaborone, Botswana & Tel: (267) Cell: (267) Environment Statistics & Accounts- Background The Natural Resource Accounting programme of Botswana is part of a broader exertion to promote sustainable development in Botswana as captured in the National Conservation Strategy (1990). The Natural Resource Accounts (NRA) seeks to incorporate aspects of sustainability into system of national accounts. Shortcomings of National Accounts with regards to natural resources as highlighted by Lange (2000) read: Even though the wealth of the nation includes natural capital such as minerals and forestry, this natural capital is often not included at all, or only partly included in the capital accounts. Furthermore, the extraction and sale of assets are recorded as income but not recorded as depletion of natural capital, even of the non- renewable assets like minerals. Consequently the national accounts do not keep track of the rate at which natural assets are being used up and what they are being used for……… Natural Resource Accounts are therefore designed to shred light into the afore-mentioned problems, hence making a sound understanding of how natural capital works within the economy.

3 Environment Statistics & Accounts- Background Continued…… The first endeavor to construct NRA in Botswana started in the 1980s. It is during this effort that the theoretical framework for NRA published in Natural Resource Accounts for Botswana: Environmental Accounting for a Natural Resource-Based Economy (Perrings et al., 1989; Lange, 2000) was developed. The University of Botswana and Central Statistics Office spear headed this effort. In 1998 Botswana formally established her NRA Programme and the main purpose of the programme was to assess the status of Botswanas resources and their economic use. Work done so far…… The Contribution of Minerals to Sustainable Economic Development in Botswana report to the Botswana Natural Resource Accounting Programme by Dr. Glenn-Marie Lange, New York University (November 2000) Water Accounts of Botswana ( ) prepared by the Department of Environmental Affairs in association with the Centre for Applied Research (July 2006) Natural Resource Accounting of Botswanas Livestock Sector prepared by the Department of Environmental Affairs in association with the Centre for Applied Research, May 2007

4 2.0 Central Statistics Office Structure The CSO is functionally divided into two major divisions- economic and social statistics. Other additional units include Administration and Human Resources, Computing Services and Cartography and Geographical Information Systems Units. Environment Statistics Unit The CSO has in the economic statistics division Environment Statistics Unit (ESU) which was established in The ESU is responsible for collection of environmental statistics. Environmental Indicators compiled include: Land Water Resources Forestry Energy Agriculture Mining Environmental Disasters Climate Biodiversity

5 3.0 Data Challenges Ineffective or lack of central depository stations: Data providers from the same institution provide data in different formats and at different times. This causes delay. Lack of data standards: Even within the same institution, integration of data from different sources often poses a challenge due to lack of standards for data storage and classification/coding of certain variables. Lack of standard coding systems and classifications of relevant variables: Data providers often make errors and spell names of the same administrative districts differently, for example, hence making it difficult to assign codes to those districts. Inefficient use of information technology: Even up to now there are institutions that record data manually as hard copies. In some instances the digitizing of data is so poorly managed that the data cannot be electronically utilized until it is reformatted for some variables, or re-entered for other variables. Minimal consideration of user needs during database set-up: The CSO-ESU encounters many challenges when collecting secondary data that is generated in some institutions daily because it is never consulted about its data needs. Lack of skills: on climate modeling, calculation of some environmental indicators, development of natural resource accounts etc.

6 4.0 Method of Data Collection The ESU collects secondary data from its stakeholders. Specifications on how the required data should be are usually prescribed in the request letters. Desktop research is also done. Secondary Data Limitations The major limitations of the use of secondary data are that, it limits us to variables collected by the providers. The second limitation is that some of the information collected for the production of the literature is self reported, which is prone to reporting errors and bias. The third limitation is that some of the findings we derive from the availed secondary data are based on cross- sectional data, implying that the direction of causal relationships cannot be determined. The interpretation of results therefore limits it to associations between variables rather than the cause and effect relationship.

7 Stakeholders collecting, compiling and disseminating environment data 1. Dept of Meteorological Services: Climate (temperature & rainfall) 2. Office of the President: Drought, floods, expenditure on drought relief projects 3. Dept of Forestry & Range Resources (DFRR): Forestry inventory, veld products & fires 4. Dept of Waste Management & Pollution Control (DWMPC): Quantity of waste 5. Water Utilities Cooperation, Dept of Water Affairs & Local Authorities: Water; abstraction, quality, consumption & waste data 6. Energy Affairs Division: Energy; source, demand, supply/production 7. Labour Statistics: Imports e.g. cereals 8. Dept of Wildlife & National Parks: Wildlife population, densities, mortality, problem animals, licenses etc 9. Dept of Mines: Land covered by mines & emissions 10. Ministry of Agriculture (Land Use Division): Land use maps 11. United Nations: Environmental Indicators 12 Central Statistics Office-Cartography Unit & Dept of Surveys & Mapping: Maps 13. Central Statistics Office-Agricultural Statistics: Livestock population, crop production & area planted 14. Central Statistics Office-Demography Unit: Population size, distribution, growth etc. NB: There is no clear cooperation mechanism among stakeholders in environment data sharing. Individual stakeholders can disseminate information without the consent of others. Some data are availed only through requests.

8 5.0 Methods of disseminating environment statistics & indicators The ESU disseminates environment statistics reports through publications. The same reports can also be accessed online ( Environment Statistics Publications so far…… 1. 1.Environment Statistics- 2000, Wildlife Statistics Water Statistics Forestry Digest Natural Disasters Digest Energy Statistics Selected Environmental Indicators- 2002

9 6.0 Inclusion of environment statistics in the national strategy for the development of statistics There is no national strategy for the development of statistics. What is quite obvious is that the CSO is a Government department which is currently going through a transition to becoming an autonomous body. The organization has a vision, mission statement, values and structure. 7.0 Assistance extended to ESU The Environment Statistics Unit has received a lot technical assistance from international agencies like UNEP, UNECA, UNDP, WCMC, ISI, in Went Capacity Building International and many others through workshops, online courses and conferences. Currently one of our officers is engaged in BICSAfrica Project (Biodiversity Indicator Capacity Strengthening) with UNEP-WCMC. (Online technical assistance)

10 8.0 Conclusion As already mentioned lack of expertise in the field of natural resource accounting has contributed to the ESUs failure to develop some natural resource accounts. With respect to data challenges in the production of a maiden environment statistics report the following should be put into practice : The standardization of coding systems, data storage and variable classification formats. The need to consult all stakeholders before and during the process of data collection and storage in a database. The need for more efficient use of information technology, (e.g. automated edit checks in the databases) to ensure that data released to users is consistent. Stakeholder collaborative efforts have to be employed during the production of the statistical reports for issues of quality assurance.


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