Kenya Initiates $15 Billion National Tree Growing Campaign for Climate Action

NAIROBI – In a concerted effort to combat climate change, the Kenyan Ministries of Education and Environment, Climate Change and Forestry have unveiled an ambitious $15 billion National Tree Growing Programme aimed at increasing the nation’s tree cover from 12 percent to 30 percent by 2032. The initiative, which is part of a broader 10-year National Landscape Ecosystem Restoration Strategy, was announced during a press briefing at the Nairobi Arboretum.

According to Kenya News Agency, Climate Change and Forestry Cabinet Secretary Soipan Tuya, the program seeks to cultivate an additional 10.6 million hectares of forested land across 11 key intervention zones. With the engagement of approximately 17 million students and 6,000 educators from various educational levels and institutions, the government plans to plant 35 million trees and produce 300 million seedlings annually.

The collaboration between the ministries intends to leverage the widespread reach of the education sector to foster a significant uptick in tree planting and care, with an emphasis on sustainable development and community involvement. Basic Education Principal Secretary Belio Kipsang highlighted the operational achievements, including the development of new seed centers and the establishment of a coordinated tree growing framework that integrates educational institutions across the country.

The inter-ministerial synergy is further strengthened by commitments to share resources and expertise, notably with the Ministry of Environment, Climate Change and Forestry promising to supply 15,000 kg of tree seeds each year to support the educational sector’s seedling production goals. Additionally, the Kenya Forest Service and Kenya Research Institute will provide necessary technical assistance to optimize seedling cultivation and tree planting efforts.

As part of the initiative, innovative funding mechanisms and reward systems are being devised to incentivize participation and excellence in tree growing among educational institutions. Furthermore, the integration of digital applications under the Ministry of Information, Communications, and Digital ICT is expected to streamline the monitoring and reporting of tree growing activities nationwide.

The announcement underscores Kenya’s proactive stance on environmental conservation and climate change mitigation, illustrating the government’s commitment to leveraging cross-sectoral partnerships and community engagement to achieve significant ecological restoration and sustainability goals by 2032.

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