Deana Clifford; Rudovick Kazwala; Peter Coppolillo; Jonna Mazet
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Livestock-Climate Change CRSP, University of California- Davis
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Abstract: Daily workloads and livelihoods in rural communities depend heavily on the availability of natural resources. When water is scarce, workloads increase, as more distance must be traveled to acquire adequate supply for consumption, hygiene, and livestock. In addition, water limitation brings people, livestock, and wildlife together, increasing contamination of the limited water sources as well as the potential for disease transmission. Nowhere is the risk of waterborne illness and zoonotic disease more important than in the high HIV/AIDS (Human Immunodeficiency Virus/Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome) prevalence regions of East Africa. Assessing the impacts of zoonotic diseases like bovine tuberculosis (BTB) on health, economic livelihoods, and conservation requires a multi-disciplinary approach. Support from the Global Livestock Collaborative Research Support Program (GL-CRSP) is allowing an objectives assessment of emerging zoonotic disease on health and livelihoods in pastoral communities within the sensitive Ruaha region of Tanzania. Project research has identified several pathogens including BTB in wildlife and livestock in the Ruaha area, along with low levels of zoonotic disease awareness among the pastoralist communities. Project results will inform management and policy to evaluate water quality for public safety and ecosystem health.