Kenya: With the onset of the short rain season, Kenya Forest Service, together with the Ministry of Environment, Climate Change & Forestry and all the agencies in the Ministry have begun a national tree growing exercise to plant over 500 million across the country.
“Today, I joined the Principal Secretary for Forestry, Gitonga Mugambi and the Secretary of Administration, Evans Mutari, at Kapolet Forest Station in Transzoia County to plant over 10,000 assorted indigenous tree seedlings in an event graced by Governor George Natembeya EBS, said Alex Lemarkoko”, Chief Conservator of Kenya Forest.
Furthermore, he asserted by saying, “This is part of the 15 Billion Tree Growing Programme intervention 6, which seeks to rehabilitate degraded natural forest areas and water towers.”
The PS noted that the Cherangany Ecosystem had lost about 30% of its cover due to encroachment. He urged the community to be at the forefront of forest conservation, noting that community groups that are engaged in tree growing and forest conservation will, in the future, benefit from revenues generated from carbon trading.
He noted that it was everyone’s duty to conserve forests for future generations. He said that recently graduated forest rangers will be deployed to the area to assist with forest protection.
He also informed them that soon the Ministry will roll out the recruitment of the green army to assist in seedling production and tree growing and urged the youth and women to present themselves for consideration.
The Governor warned the local community against forest destruction, saying the consequences will be detrimental to their well-being.
Lemarkoko said, “I urged the local community to work together with our officers to conserve local forests. I also informed the stakeholders present to move away from just planting trees to growing and nurturing them to maturity to ensure sustainable provision of critical environmental services.”
“I warned those people involved in forest destruction through encroachment to move out and pave way for the conservation of the critical water tower which serves the country and the region,” added Lemarkoko.