Kenya Defense Forces drop guns for tree seedlings as they begin operation to plant 3 million trees in quest to restore depleted forest cover
Under the Environmental Soldier Program, KDF soldiers have been undertaking key environmental conservation initiatives in various parts of the country.
As part of their commitment to protect Kenya’s natural resources, they have undertaken to plant and nurture 2 million indigenous trees at Kibiku forest and a further 1 million indigenous trees at Ololua Forest.
Speaking when he led events to mark the International Day of Forests 2018, Environment and Forestry Cabinet Secretary Keriako Tobiko welcomed KDF participation in environmental regeneration initiative and said his ministry has commenced plans to integrate County, disciplined forces, public and private sector leadership teams in the ongoing national tree planting campaign.
“Protecting our environment and forests is a shared responsibility that we shall relentlessly pursue to make our cities, among other urban and rural towns, environmental centres of excellence,” Tobiko said.
“In partnership with County leadership teams among other partners, we intend to achieve a 10% tree cover by the year 2022 and I am glad various groups including the disciplined forces, public agencies, educational institutions and corporate organisations are taking the lead.”
The involvement of the Military officers in the restoration of depleted Kibiku and Ololua forest sections comes hot on the heels of the recent replacement of all Kenya Forest Service officers previously deployed at the Kibiku, Ololua, Thogoto and Ngong Road forest stations due to widespread destruction of the crucial forest sites.
Early this month, the ministry of defence also announced the Kenyan military will be deployed to secure the countries’ lakes and rivers as well as the Exclusive Economic Zone along the Kenyan coast in aid of exploitation of Kenya’s vast blue economy.
Kenya hopes to increase its forest cover to 15 per cent by the year 2022 from the current 7 per cent.
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