Ministry of Climate Change organised an inauguration ceremony of Monsoon Tree Plantation drive in federal capital under the Green Pakistan Programme at trail five near camp office of Islamabad Wildlife Management Board.
Federal Minister for Climate Change Yousaf Sheikh inaugurated the campaign by planting a tree.
While addressing the guests, he said Pakistan is a forest-deficient country having only 5.01 per cent of its total area under the forest cover. Our forests provide diverse ecological systems that are rich source of timbre, fuel wood and a variety of non-timber products such as medicine and aromatic plants, wild fruit and barriers.
In addition to these products our forests also provide environmental and ecological services such as carbon sequestration, water regulation, soil fertility, habitat for biodiversity and prevent soil erosion.
Due to a multitude of direct and indirect factors such as an increasing population, limited alternative options, exploitation, lack of capacity and natural man-made hazards, our forest resources are continually depleting.
He further said plantation is not only necessary for the provision of ecosystem services but also as a mitigation and adaptation measures to counter the negative impacts of climate change.
He further highlighted that large-scale efforts have been made at the national and provincial level to rehabilitate the forest resources through Green Pakistan Programme and Billion Tree afforestation project. However, there is still need for more coordinated and concerted efforts by all segments of the society to counter the current processes of deforestation and bring about an improvement in the forest cover through plantations.
The government of Pakistan is determined to actively engage academia, student and civil society to achieve this challenging task.
He also revealed that government of Pakistan has set a target of planting 47.14 million plants during the current monsoon.
With the target in sight Punjab would plant nine million, Sindh 11 million, KPK 15 million, Baluchistan 0.6 million, Azad Jammu and Kashmir 3.6 million, Gilgit Baltistan 0.5 million, the areas previously under FATA 5.3 million, National Highway Authority 0.5 million, international union of conservation of nature 0.5 million, Pakistan Ordinance Factory 20 thousands, Ministry of Defence one million, Aeronautical complex 20 thousands and heavy industries Taxila have also set the target of 0.1 million plants to be planted.
Earlier this week the Inspector General Police Islamabad Jan Muhammad also planted a sapling at Diplomatic Enclave.
The event was attended by diplomats of various countries along with high officials of police and students.
The police official deployed at Diplomatic Enclave said that under the drive around 1,000 trees of fruits and local species have been planted at various locations.
He also informed that during last tree plantation drive around 1,000 plants of local species were planted at various points including offices and police barracks.
The survival rates of saplings planted by the police are more than 90 per cent, he informed.
He further said that special in-charge had been deputed to look after the growth of trees planted during the last tree plantation drives. “Trees are symbols of life and ensure clean and healthy environment. We are playing our role and urged the citizens to actively participate in the monsoon drive launched by the federal and provincial governments,” he said.