Ministry of Environment calls for unified action against climate crisis

In a resounding call to action, the Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change, and Forestry, Soipan Tuya, has urged a collective effort from various sectors to combat the climate change crisis. The Ministry’s ambitious plan aims to plant 15 billion trees by 2032.

During a meeting at Mombasa State House, the Cabinet endorsed a holistic approach to environmental conservation. Tuya explained, “The 15 Billion Tree campaign is a whole society, whole government approach. Cabinet Secretaries will champion tree planting campaigns in their respective counties, with each CS overseeing two counties, coordinating all stakeholders to achieve this goal.”

The strategy outlines specific targets for each county, distributed among government ministries, departments, state and non-state agencies, and grassroots individuals. Tuya emphasized, “In the Nyanza region, Eliud Owalo, CS Ministry of Information, Communications, and The Digital Economy, will coordinate stakeholders in Kisumu County to plant 91.8 million trees in ten years. Siaya, Migori, and Homabay Counties aim for 149 million trees each in a decade, totaling 14 million annually.”

CS Tuya joined the Professional Association of Nyanza (PANY) Women in planting over 1,000 tree seedlings in Kisumu County and stressed the importance of environmental conservation, considering the severe impact of climate change on the nation, including droughts and floods.

The government’s accelerated ecosystem restoration agenda seeks to increase the national tree cover from the current 12.3% to 30%. Tuya highlighted that many Nyanza region counties fall short of the constitutional target of at least 10% tree cover, such as Siaya County with 5.27%, Kisumu County at 8.85%, Homabay County with 10.4%, and Migori County at 10.76%. However, Nyeri and Lamu Counties are leading with tree covers of 45% and 44%, respectively.

The initiative also aims to amend the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) Act to involve Members of Parliament in ecosystem restoration efforts, encouraging tree planting and seedling production with the engagement of women and young people.

The call for unified efforts in environmental conservation and tree planting is a significant step forward in Kenya’s fight against the climate change crisis.

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