Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that for the sake of future generations, the 10bn-Tree Tsunami Project of the government must be turned into a success.
He took to Twitter, sharing a news story on the environment and planting trees.
“Ours was the first party and government that understood this phenomenon in Pakistan, and started the Billion-Tree Tsunami. For the future of our generations, we must all strive to make our 10bn Tree Tsunami a success,” Khan tweeted.
His Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party, which came to power last year, pledged to plant billions of trees to tackle the effects of climate change.
In 2013, the PTI-led Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provincial government introduced a green-growth initiative to tackle deforestation, build more small-scale hydroelectric projects and overhaul national parks.
At a press conference in Islamabad, Adviser to Prime Minister on Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam announced that the government would plant 10bn saplings in the next five years.
He said that the project is a landmark initiative of the present government under the “Eco-System Restoration Initiative”.
“As much as Rs125bn have been earmarked in this regard. This year the government will spend nearly Rs8bn to begin the project,” Aslam said.
This new initiative builds on the success of Billion-tree Tsunami Project (BTP) in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa during the past five years, which increased the forest cover by over 600,000 hectares.
The project was funded through public sector resources and acknowledged by the UN Environment, Bonn Challenge and other international bodies such as the World Economic Forum.
Aslam said that the success of billion-tree plantation came from the use of local financing with the highest level of political commitment.
“After gaining experience, Pakistan is now launching a much wider initiative, spread over the entire country, targeting 10bn trees in the next five years.
“This initiative will prove an effective vehicle to manage risks of environmental degradation and climate change while simultaneously driving economic growth, livelihoods and poverty reduction,” the Aslam said.
He said that in the long run, the initiative would facilitate transition towards an environmentally-resilient Pakistan, by mainstreaming adaptation and mitigation through ecologically-targeted initiatives covering afforestation and biodiversity conservation consistent with the objectives outlined in Pakistan’s Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC).
The 10bn Tree Tsunami project will also help restore at least 30% of degraded forest, 5% of degraded cropland, 6% of degraded grassland, and 10% of wetlands in Pakistan by 2030.
“The 10bn Tree Tsunami is the biggest investment in preserving the deteriorated environment in all the provinces of the country,” Aslam said.
Pakistan has also invited other countries to participate in the project.