The Korean government has reaffirmed its commitments of supporting Kenya in improving its forest cover with a view of saving mankind from drought and famine.
Korean ambassador to Kenya Kwon Young-Dae who spoke at Kereita forest in Lari sub-county during the Kenya/Korea tree planting functions where thousands of indigenous trees were planted yesterday emphasized the importance of tree planting noting that deforestation posed a serious danger to the humanity.
He said that the tree planting collaboration between the Kenya Forest Services and the embassy of the republic of Korea aimed at rehabilitating the escarpment forest reserve and which started in 2012 would continue to grow adding that the forest whose situate is the western fringes of the Aberdare forest eco-system in on of the key towers in Kenya.
Kenya Forest Service board chairman Peter Kinyua hailed the Korea government for it’s relentless support and assisting the service in the rehabilitation of the forest which was formerly degraded noting that a total of 16 hectares of forest land tree planting has so far been accomplished since the collaboration started.
He said that the Korea government had provided seven thousand trees this planting season as well also providing further funding and maintenance of the forest.
The chairman noted that the severe drought witnessed in many parts of the country had forced pastoralist communities and livestock farmers to seek grazing and pasture within state forest leading to serious degradation of forests.
‘There is need to invest more in protection of forests and control over grazing and excessive harvesting of fodder for livestock and KFS will increase collaboration with county governments across the country in order to ensure county forests are will managed and stakeholders are educated on the importance of conserving forests’, he said.
He said that the country has borne the brunt of one of the most severe drought and famine which has taken a toll on forests adding that KFS had come up with an ambitious project themed, ‘Plant trees, reduce the adverse effects of drought’ which will be applied in all tree planting and growing across the country.
He further noted that tree planting is one of the main solutions to mitigating the adverse effects of climate change and called on all Kenyans to reflect on the importance of participating in tree planting and conserving forest resources.
Chief conservator of forests Emilio Mugo called upon the Korean government to assist Kenya under a bilateral arrangement to protect, conserve and sustainably manage her forest ecosystem for climate change resilience and socio-economic development.