President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has declared June 10, 2022, as this year’s Green Ghana Day, under the theme “Mobilising for a Greener Future.”
The Green Ghana Day was instituted last year by the government, under the auspices of the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, as part of an aggressive afforestation and reforestation agenda, to restore the lost forest cover of the country with 20 million trees this year.
The maiden edition of the Green Ghana Day was held on June 11, 2021, where the President led the entire nation to plant over seven million trees, exceeding the target of five million trees.
Speaking at the launch in Accra, the President said forest is one of the most important natural resources of our country, as it provides sources of livelihood for many and generates income for the nation, adding that, the forest sector generated almost GH₵1 billion from the export last year.
The President said forests are also very important to the fight against climate change and the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.
“With just eight years to achieve the goals we set for ourselves in the Sustainable Development, climate change continues to derail our efforts, by impacting the fundamentals required to the achieve the Goals,” he said.
He bemoaned the wanton depletion of the world’s forests, especially in Africa, where there is an increase in net forest loss.
The President said a greener future is necessary for the survival of our planet, and in accordance with the duty of every citizen under the constitution, to protect and safeguard the environment.
He called on all residents to go out on June 10 to plant and encourage others to do same and commit to ensure that the trees planted reach maturity while hoping that people will contribute in diverse ways to ensure that the exercise does not burden the public purse.
The Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor, said the country has lost over 8 million hectares of forest since 1900, but managed to plant only 157,300 hectares between 1963 and 2016.
He said as a result of the government’s aggressive afforestation programme, about 477,485 hectares of forest was cultivated between 2017 and the third quarter of 2021.
“Significant though this may be, it is not enough, compared to the over 8 million hectares lost over the years,” the minister said.
He, therefore, called on the public to embrace the building of a ‘Green Ghana, while also asking’ for the support to realise the target of planting 20 million trees, which he said will require a lot of resources.
The Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, according to the minister, intends to pilot the concept of carbon trading with corporate Ghana, during this year’s edition of Green Ghana.