PM launches countrywide drive to plant 10 billion trees in five years | Pakistan Today

PM launches countrywide drive to plant 10 billion trees in five years

  • Info minister plants sapling at PTV headquarters

  • Railways minister says tackling climate change govt’s top priority

Prime Minister Imran Khan Sunday launched a countrywide drive here to plant 10 billion trees across the country within five years to counter challenges of global warming and deforestation.

The prime minister was accompanied by Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Chief Minister Mehmood Khan, Advisor on Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam, Special Assistant to PM on Political Affairs Naeemul Haq, and authorities from the forest department.

The prime minister inaugurated the “10 Billion Tree Tsunami” drive by planting a sapling of Deodar specie at Makhniyal area where he had also kicked off “Billion Tree Tsunami” project of KP government in 2015.

The first day of the drive was observed as ‘Plant for Pakistan Day’ when around 1.5 million saplings would be planted in a single day across the country.

After launching the drive, the prime minister told the media that Pakistan would be the seventh most affected country by global warming so enhancing the forest cover was crucial.

“This is crucial for the generations to come. This is the fight for life and death,” the prime minister remarked.

He said that although this plantation season was about to end, the government would keep up striving to make this initiative a success.

The prime minister said that the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government had planted around 1.18 billion in KP during previous term and under this drive, trees would be planted across the country, be it is plains, roadsides or any empty spaces.

Responding to a question, the prime minister said that tree plantation was not solely the government’s job rather it was the responsibility of the whole nation. “Everyone must take part in the campaign to plant trees else the land would turn into a desert as the glaciers are already melting owing to global warming,” he said.

He said that the massive plantation would also help address the challenge of growing pollution in the cities like smog.

He also said that unfortunately the timbers worth Rs200 billion were axed during one decade.

PM Khan said that the government would also spread awareness among the young generation regarding the importance of trees and forests by inculcating the subject in educational curriculum.

Earlier, talking to APP, Advisor Malik Amin Aslam said that the government would adopt the KP model to ensure the success of country’s largest ever plantation drive.

He said that around 200 plantation distribution centers had been set up to provide saplings to the people free of charge.

He said that excessive plantation was of utmost importance for the country to tackle the challenges of climate change and water shortage.

He said that the factors behind the success of Billion Tree Tsunami project were zero tolerance towards timber mafia, effective preservation of forests to allow the regeneration, involvement of private sector and local community.

He said that the survival rate of trees in KP had been around 80 per cent and hoped that it would be achieved across the country.

He said that the Billion Tree Tsunami project had created around 0.5 million jobs and the new drive would generate even more openings.

Amin Aslam said that besides enhancing the forest cover, the drive would also help bring green economic development in the country.

Metropolitan Corporation Islamabad (MCI), Capital Development Authority (CDA) and National Highway Authority (NHA) also planted more than 40,000 thousands saplings in various parts of the city including Parade Ground Islamabad, Airport Road and Quaid-e-Azam University.

A large number of people from different walks of life also took part in the massive plantation drive.

Similarly, in all four provinces including Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Jammu Kashmir tree plantation drive conducted. More than 200 events were held in all major cities across the country.

Students of various universities, school and colleges also participated in one day tree plantation drive.

According to experts, Pakistan is facing enormous environmental challenges, thus PM Imran’s main issue to tackle during his tenure is climate change.

A survey conducted by the Sustainable Development Policy Institute ahead of the 2018 poll found that respondents prioritised three key environmental issues: rising temperatures, water shortages, and air pollution.

INFO MINISTER PLANTS SAPLING AT PTV HEADQUARTERS:

Minister for Information and Broadcasting Fawad Chaudhry has planted a sapling at PTV headquarters building in connection with the ‘Plant for Pakistan’ campaign being observed on Sunday.

Talking to media, he said that Pakistan is among the countries where forest areas have been severely destroyed. He said that PTI government had started a Billion Tree Tsunami project and planted over one billion saplings in KP in the last five years.

He said that the PTI government has finalised a plan to plant 10 billion saplings in the next five years. Prime Minister Imran Khan has already inaugurated the campaign to plant 10 billion saplings in next five years. It is the clear vision of PM Khan to plant numerous saplings for improving the overall environment. No other politician talks about improving the environment.

The manifesto of PTI is also clear about environment, he said, adding that a total of 1.5 million saplings were being planted across the country in one day. He said that small cities, towns and other stake holders would also be taken on board to make tree plantation campaign a success.  There would be a marked change in the environment of the country after completion of five year tenure of PTI government.

Earlier, the minister also prayed for progress, prosperity and development of the country immediately after planting the sapling.

RAILWAYS MINISTER SAYS TACKLING CLIMATE CHANGE GOVT’S TOP PRIORITY:

Minister for Railways Sheikh Rasheed Ahmad said that climate change is one of the main issues that PM Khan’s government aims to tackle through initiatives like tree plantation.

While participating in a ‘Plant for Pakistan’ drive at Kural Chowk Islamabad, the minister said three nurseries will be established in Rawalpindi.

He further said that Pakistan Railways will be supporting PM Khan in this pious drive as it is the need of the country. He appealed the people to come out and participate in this campaign.



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