- The programme will commence early next year.
- Both food and non-food trees will be planted.
Absa Bank will plant over 10 million trees in five years.
The Bank’s head of sustainability Jane Maina said the trees will be planted in various parts of Kenya to boost the forest cover to 10 per cent.
Currently, the country’s tree cover is at 7.2 per cent.
She said the programme will assist the national government in combating the effects of climate change and unemployment.
“As an organisation, we have to make sure the money we are financing is aligned to environmental friendly projects that will jump-start development and responsible businesses to the locals,” she said.
Maina said by rehabilitating the degraded natural forests and mangrove ecosystem a lot of employment opportunities can be tapped through tourism, industries and cultural activities.
The tree planting will commence early next year.
Maina said different species of trees will be planted as per an area’s climatic condition.
For example, at the Coast mangrove trees are expected to be planted more compared to the highland regions. Both food and non-food trees will be planted.
“We won’t just plant any tree but will be looking for something that can boost the livelihoods of the communities, food security and environmental conservation,” she said.
The officer said both state and non-state agencies will help in implementing the five-year programme.
The Kenya Forestry Research Institute, Kenya Marine and Fisheries Research Institute and locals are among the key stakeholders taking part in the project.
Kefri director Joseph Cheboi said the government needs to grow about two billion trees to reach the 10 per cent tree cover by 2022.
He commended the Absa Bank project and urged everyone to get on board in helping the government attain the required forest cover.
Edited by Henry Makori