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Rotary Uganda, NARO sign pact to contribute towards environmental conservation through Tree Planting

The National Agricultural Research Organisation has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with Rotary Uganda to support Rotary District 9211’s Mission Green. Mission Green’s objective is to protect the environment and reduce the adverse effects of climate change and improve the income levels of susceptible groups with the Local Government authorities.

While the main objective of this partnership is to formalize the cooperation between the parties in the sustainable development of the environment, it will also ensure that structures are maintained for the success of the cooperation.

Global warming has been an issue of concern globally and different countries and organizations have taken the initiative to spearhead activities that will contribute to less adverse effects of Global warming. One of those organisations is Rotary International. One of the most common interventions in that regard in Uganda has been tree-planting. However in Uganda, some district officials are now shying away from these activities citing the lack of sustainability consequently leaving areas as they were before that is with minimal vegetative cover. At the World Food Day celebrations in Rubanda district recently, Rubanda District Officials said, “People dash to plant trees as an effort to green the environment and then walk away without training those they leave behind on the requisite care for the tree seedlings to thrive. All the trees they leave behind are now dead!”

The National Agricultural Research Organisation through its Forestry Institute – National Forestry Resources and Research Institute will provide technical support to this partnership. The technical support will include; technical backstopping regarding tree planting, technology definition of various tree planting sites, training and sensitization of stakeholders on appropriate forestry technologies. This will in turn address the issues that have been raised by the different local government authorities.

The Director General, NARO Dr. Ambrose Agona in his remarks said “Uganda is losing 200 hectares of tree cover each year and we therefore must get involved in rectifying this. Our involvement is to ensure that we do it right and this we will do by first establishing a suitability map and ensuring that the right tree species are planted in the right areas. In doing this, we will address adverse effects like the Bududa landslides.”

The District Governor Rotary District 9211, Mr. Ken Mugisha noted that the Rotary Uganda intention was to plant close to 20 million trees in a bid to address the climate change issues while at the same time contributing towards increased household incomes right to the grass root levels at the Local Government structures.

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