AngloGold Ashanti Ghana, Obuasi Mine, commemorates the Green Ghana Day launched by the President of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akuffo-Addo. June 10 has been earmarked as the National Green Ghana Day, and as such was commemorated with a durbar and tree-planting exercise. The theme for this year’s edition was ‘Mobilising for a Greener Future’.
The Obuasi Mine has committed to planting 1,000 seedlings in schools and communities within its operational footprint every year in support of government’s Green Ghana initiative. The plan is not just to plant, but also to monitor the growth of the seedlings into matured trees.
The Green Ghana initiative, introduced in 2021, is intended to create enhanced national awareness of the necessity for collective action toward restoration of degraded landscape in the country, and inculcate in the youth the value of planting and nurturing trees and their associated benefits.
Emmanuel Baidoo, Senior Manager – Sustainability Department of the Mine, mentioned that AGAG will undertake this tree-planting exercise by collaborating with AGA Malaria Control and other stakeholders in the communities the mine operates. “This year, we are aiming at even planting 2000 trees. We will ensure that the trees we have planted are well nurtured, which will end up being developed to contribute to the biodiversity that we all anticipate.”
He also added: “As a mine, we have a comprehensive Environment Management Plan, part of which is to ensure that they implement a robust reclamation programme to restore the land they have disturbed to its original state.”
Lauding government for the Green Ghana initiative, the Senior Manager – Sustainability said the initiative is aligned to AGAG’s overall objective; so they consider it as a pledge to their commitment to invest in interventions that protect the environment.
CROPP to reclaim disturbed lands
As part of the company’s Socio-Economic Development Interventions, the Obuasi Mine is currently implementing the Climate Resilient Oil Palm Project (CROPP). The project is targeting 2,000 hectares of land in its first phase of five years to plant agroforestry trees.
The objective of the CROP Project, according to Mr. Baidoo, is to ensure that all disturbed lands due to the mine’s activities are reclaimed and used for economic purposes by planting oil palms and other cash crops on them.
He again revealed that the CROP Project will be implemented on lands that have been used for illegal mining and riverbanks, particularly the Jimi River. “This is a commitment we are implementing together with our stakeholders including the Solidaridad West Africa, Department of Agriculture and Traditional Authorities. We are working to leave a sound environmental legacy,” he concluded.
Henry Yeboah, the Supervisor of the Obuasi office of the Forestry commission, said due to the successful implementation of the programme last year, government decided to increase the seedlings from 5 million to 20 million.
He gave the seedlings planted in Obuasi in 2021, a 70 percent survival rate, and promised to continue to monitor those that are given out this year. He reiterated that Obuasi has been given 19,000 seedlings to be given out freely to individuals, Churches and organisations. He further advised beneficiaries to maintain and protect them.