Kirinyaga, Kenya – In anticipation of the national tree planting day on Monday, November 13, residents of Kiangai in Central Kirinyaga County have received a significant boost from the state department of energy. The department has distributed 12,500 tree seedlings and 400 energy-saving stoves, commonly known as jikos, to the local community.
According to Kenya News Agency, Assistant County Commissioner (ACC) Stephen Limoo collaborated with the Ministry of Energy in this initiative. The effort aims to reach 700 households in Kiangai, encouraging them to plant trees and use energy-efficient stoves. ACC Limoo emphasized the importance of tree planting and conservation to prevent desertification and to meet President Ruto’s target of planting 15 billion trees by 2032. He also called for private entities and other state departments to support the initiative by providing more seedlings and education on reducing global warming.
Esther Wang’ombe, representing the state department of energy, highlighted the ongoing commitment to supply seedlings and energy-efficient jikos. She announced that from April next year, residents will also benefit from free fruit seedling donations. The jiko distribution program, currently in its second phase, aims to reduce the reliance on firewood by providing stoves that use less charcoal. This initiative is part of a broader strategy to minimize tree cutting for charcoal production.
A local resident, Wanjiku Macharia, expressed gratitude for the program. She noted that the distribution of seedlings and stoves, particularly during the rainy season, not only aids in environmental conservation but also helps keep the elderly warm. Macharia also appreciated the sourcing of seedlings from local suppliers, stating that this approach has positively impacted the community’s attitude towards forest and water body protection, as well as pollution reduction.