Kericho County Targets 163 Million Trees By 2032

Kericho County residents are expected to have planted a total of 163 million trees covering 60,000 hectares by the year 2032 to reach 30 per cent national tree cover, the Principal Secretary for Petroleum, Mr. Mohamed Liban, has disclosed. Speaking during the National Tree Growing Day at Kiboito wetlands in Belgut constituency in Kericho County, where he represented the Energy Cabinet Secretary, Mr. Davis Chirchir, who was the chief guest at the function, commended Kericho County for its inspiring effort in tree planting, noting that the county has attained a tree cover of 23 per cent and only has 7 per cent to achieve the national average of 30 percent. The PS was elated that the plans the county had placed in tree-growing would surpass the 30 per cent national average by the year 2032 saying it was a constitutional requirement for each Kenyan to participate in tree-growing to attain the national target. Mr. Liban enumerated the benefits of tree planting, including the mitigation of climate change being felt worldwide as a result of deforestation, land degradation, and greenhouse gas emissions, among others. He also encouraged the community to cultivate a culture of tree-growing, nurturing, and protecting trees to enhance community resilience to natural disasters such as flash floods and droughts, among others. 'For this reason, as Kenyans, we are not supposed to be left behind in our quest to assist one another and achieve the objective of the Presidential directive in tree planting from sub-counties and counties to the national level by holding hands together,' said Mr. Liban. Kericho Governor Eric Mutai noted the tree planting exercise was carried out successfully across the six sub-counties in Kericho, where multi-national tea companies like Finlays and Ekatera contributed significantly by donating hundreds of tree seedlings towards the national event. Other companies and government organisations who donated trees included the Kenya Industrial Research and Development Institute (KIRDI), which donated 10,000 tree seedlings, KTDA 5000, KFS Kericho County 20,000, and the University of Kabianga which significantly contributed to the success of the exercise by donating many seedlings. The Kericho County Commissioner, Mr. Gilbert Kitiyo, urged all chiefs and their assistants to be proactive in protecting all the planted trees in all six sub-counties to their maturity. Mr. Kitiyo said a total of 105,000 tree seedlings were planted on Monday in various areas, including schools, police stations, government water points, and individual farms. Also present at the function were Kericho Woman Rep. Beatrice Kemei, the National Chair of KIRDI Lily Ngok, University of Kabianga Vice Chancellor Prof. Eric Koech, Members of the County Assembly (MCAs), national government officials, Heads of Departments, the private sector, and members of the public. Source: Kenya News Agency