Addis Ababa July 26/2019 (ENA): Ethiopia planned to break world record through planting 200 million tree saplings on July 29, 2019 under the auspices of Green Legacy national project.

The national 4 billion trees planting project, officially launched by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed on May 26, 2019, is set to mobilize national reforestation program of planting 40 tree seedlings per head.

According to the source by Forest Monitor and EcoWatch, the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh has set a new world record after 1.5 million volunteers planted more than 66 million tree saplings in just 12 hours along the Narmada River on July 2, 2017.

Now Ethiopia is working on planting 200 million tree saplings in a single day surpassing the record set by India two years before.

Agro-forestry and Land Use Expert, at The Horn of Africa Regional Environmental Centre and Network, Dr. Azene Bekele, said the planting tree project initiated by Premier Abiy is a role model for others and can mobilize the community for forestation, which has recently been ignored by the government.

The Prime Minister’s initiation on planting 200 million seedlings a day and the four billion trees planting campaign in this summer generally embark mobilization for forestation,” he said.

Only this year, the 4 billion tree planting project will cover the country’s 2.3 percent area by forest, he indicated.

Azene stated that if Ethiopia continues to maintain the momentum of the project, the country’s 23 percent land will be covered with trees on the top of saving 390 million USD per annum, which the country spends to import forest products.

Ethiopia has tremendous potential for afforestation as plants grow throughout the year. Hence, the country can save the 390 USD for importing forest products and able to export and earn foreign currency beyond fulfilling the domestic demand,” he pointed out.

Beyond the economic importance, the project would help to mitigate the impacts of climate change as Ethiopia is one of the most vulnerable countries, he stated.

After planting, however, he said there should be follow-up care and conservation by experts and other stakeholders to achieve the goal of the national project.

Ethiopia ranks third in planting trees since 2006 of the Billion Tree Campaign, which was launched by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in response to the challenges of global warming, as well as to a wider array of sustainability challenges from water supply to biodiversity loss.

Ethiopia’s 200 million trees planting on Monday will be conducted throughout the nine regional states and the two city administrations of the country.