Machakos County has partnered with Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), Climate Prediction, Applications Centre (ICPAC) and Climate Services and Related Applications (CLimSA) to launch a massive tree planting exercise at Mumbuni Primary school to mitigate effects of climate change.
The exercise is set to run across the county and targets some 97 schools in Machakos County that have adequate water supply, with each school receiving over 100 seedlings for planting.
Machakos Deputy Governor Francis Mwangangi who chaired the delegation while speaking at Mumbuni primary, said that the seedlings are a donation from County partners, IGAD, ICPAC and CLimSA who came on board after the county appealed to Organizations of goodwill to partner and plant trees.
Mwangangi noted that the exercise is to help Machakos people become aware of their responsibility to environment protection.
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“This program is also part of awareness creation to our people to foster special responsibility to environment protection and become guardians of the environment whose actions will benefit our future generations,” said Mwangangi.
He added that they are focused in increasing tree cover across the County because they understand the role of the Eco System in Climate Change Mitigation and adaptation.
“The higher temperatures experienced now and the drying up of rivers is a wakeup call for everybody to become more accountable to environmental protection,” emphasized the Deputy Governor.
On his part Zachary Atheru the program Coordinator at IGAD said that last week ICPAC in collaboration with Meteorological department, released the regional climate guidance indicating a high possibility of depressed rainfall during March-May 2023 season.
Zachary said the tree planting exercise in Mumbuni is important because it came at a time when part of the IGAD regions are facing serious drought.
He noted that the Arid and Semi-Arid lands in Kenya have been impacted negatively by the drought. “The main reason we should actively participate in planting trees is to enrich the earth which needs healing after many years of pollution and environmental degradation,” said Mr. Zachary.
He lamented over the many trees that have been cut which need to be replaced in line with the president’s directive to plant 15 billion trees by 2032.
Zachary said the trees will help restore 5.1 million hectares of depleted and degraded landscape. “Growing a variety of trees is one of the effective ways of tackling climate change, as well as engaging the local population to look after the trees while protecting existing trees and forests,” added Zachary.