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City of Banjul
Saturday, May 25, 2024

UNESCO, partners launch 10,000 trees planting initiative to combat climate change

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By Aminata Kuyateh

In their role to combat climate change in the country, the Gambia National Commission for UNESCO and Islamic World Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (ICESCO)  in partnership with the department of forestry recently launched the ICESCO support for community reforestation programme in the Gambia for an initiative aimed at planting 10,000 trees seedlings across 20 hectares of degraded community forest land within WCR and CRR.

The convergence was held at the NaNA conference center in Kanifing which brought together stakeholders to discuss and share knowledge for the fight against climate change in the Gambia.

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The aim of the initiative is to mitigate the impacts of climate change and also promote ecosystem resilience, enhance biodiversity and improve the quality of life for the citizens.

This initiative is funded by ICESCO and implemented by UNESCO and the department of forestry under the ministry of environment climate change and natural resources.

In highlighting the significance of the initiative PS ministry of environment, Ebrima Jawara said UNESCO and partners have embarked on an ambitious journey to restore and expand our forest cover through community-led reforestation efforts by planting 10,000 trees across 20 hectares of our precious land.

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PS Jawara said “We are all aware of the profound impact of deforestation and land degradation on our environment , our economy and our society. The  loss of forest covers do not only contributes to global warming, but also threatens biodiversity,

disrupts ecosystems and undermines the livelihoods of millions of people around the globe, who depend on forests for their survival”.

PS Jawara disclosed that this initiative is in line with the Recovery Focused National Development Plan 2023-2027 and our updated National Determined Contributions and long-term Climate Neutral Development Strategy 2050.

Secretary general NATCOM, Maimuna Sidibeh said this project aims to leverage the department of forestry and strongly use a participatory approach involving the beneficiary communities in the reforestation and ecosystem restoration process.

She cited the national forestry policy 2021-20230 of the Gambia which strongly recommends collaboration and cooperation for a multi-sectoral approach in connecting stakeholders such as the department of park and wildlife, agriculture, fisheries,land physical planning and community development to enhance an integrated and sustainable forest regeneration and management.

Madam Sidibeh hails government through the ministry of environment, climate change and natural resources for the recently designation of the five(5) new ecological and biodiversity protected site in Niani sukuta, Niani kayayi, Jailan bakadaji, and Jarumeh koto and also the efforts to protect the Manduar.

Madam Sidibeh urged stakeholders to take the launching of the initiative as an inspiration to continue their efforts in the environmental preservations and appreciate the beauty of ecological diversity and for generations to come to continue to see reserved forest that their grandparents generated and protected.

Focal person at the department of forestry, Modou Colley said the department of forestry has for many years collaborated with various institutions and individuals in working together on common issues that are related to trees and forest. While added that some of this work has been in the context of climate change mitigation.

However, he said this is very much in line with the mandate of the department to maintain and conserve the country’s natural resources.

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