The government is embarking on an aggressive afforestation and reforestation programme to restore the country’s lost forest cover and halt the current rate of deforestation.
To this end, the government has launched the 2022 Green Ghana Day project aimed at planting 20 million trees.
The 2021 Green Ghana Day project saw the planting of 7 million trees and according to the Forestry Commission, 80 per cent of the trees are doing well.
Performing the launch at the Efua Sutherland’s Children Park in Accra on Friday, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo said Ghana has lost about 100,000 acres of natural forest in the last decade, despite the importance of trees to human existence.
More troubling, the President indicated, was the fact that current data showed that, the world was losing 158 acres of rainforest every minute, 200,000 acres a day and 79 million acres of rainforest in a year.
He said about 18 years ago, half of the earth’s surface was covered by the forest, “today, the estimated forest area of 4 billion hectares, forest cover is less than 30 per cent of the world’s surface.”
In the last three decades, the world had lost over one billion acres of forest, more than 10 per cent of the current forest area, the President added.
“It is in this spirit that I call on every one of you, whether you are a Ghanaian or not, in so far as you are in Ghana, to join us today to plant at least, 20 million trees,” Akufo-Addo said.
The Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor said this year’s tree planting exercise would see 10 million of the 20 million trees being planted in forest reserves across the country.
The remaining 10 million will be planted in forest reserves including water sheds, boundaries, office compounds, parks, roadsides, homes, Churches, Mosques, schools and other significant areas.
“Given the very ambitious nature of our target, we have had to mobilize 20 million seedlings, distribute them, get them planted and develop a framework to nurture them to maturity,” Abu Jinapor said.
Rex Mainoo Yeboah, ISD