The Pakistani government on Sunday approved a monsoon campaign which aims to plant more than 100 million saplings across the nation. Minister for Climate Change Zahid Hamid accorded the approval of what is called the Green Pakistan Programme at a meeting in which targets suggested by various government entities and non-governmental organizations were evaluated and discussed.
Spokesman for the Ministry of Climate Change, Mohammad Saleem later told media that a ceremony would be held in August to launch a full-fledged monsoon plantation campaign sponsored by the federal minister for Climate Change. He explained that the various entities have already made preparations for kicking off the monsoon plantation with enough stocks of saplings in nurseries in various parts of the country.
Trees mitigate impact of flood
Saleem explained that the government was committed to boosting the country’s forest cover in order to mitigate the impact of floods in the most effective way. In this task all provincial and federal government organizations, educational institutes, corporate sector, the NGOs and media were being approached and engaged.
According to the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) forests hold back flood water by nearly 72 hours. Forests reduce intensity of the deluge water, lower chances of deaths and damages to roads, building infrastructures, bridges as well as standing crops from being washed away or wiped out, the spokesman for the Ministry for Climate Change explained. He said the 4-month long monsoon season was the best time for the growth of the country’s forest cover as the wet season provided the much needed rain water for the saplings to grow fast and take a strong grip on the soil.