ENVIRONMENT | FEATURES: Uganda Breweries Limited (UBL) has committed over Shs330 million to the Ministry of Water and Environment towards the 2021 National Tree Planting Campaign dubbed ROOTs – Running Out of Trees.
The cheque, which was handed over on Tuesday, will be used to mobilize the public and private sectors to plant 40 million trees countrywide by May 17, a day that has been gazette as the National Tree Planting Day.
While handing over the cheque, Juliana Kagwa, the corporate relations director of UBL acknowledged that it is good business for both public and private firms to rise to the challenge of tackling the environmental crisis before us today.
“If the forest cover is depleting at the rate of 122,000 hectares per year, and Uganda has 4.9m hectares, if we do nothing, in 40 short years, Uganda will be left bare. We must therefore put in motion the process and tools necessary to ensure that this beautiful, green country of ours continues to sustain our livelihoods as we pledge to sustain its survival,” Kagwa said.
The ROOTs campaign is an initiative between the Ministry of Water and Environment and the private sector players whose main objective is to work together to fast track National Forest Restoration Goals and Commitments which includes a plan to restore 2.5 million hectares of degraded landscapes by 2030.
The 2021 edition will be a 10Km run held on March 21 (International Day of Forests), starting from Parliament through Nakasero and Kololo.
To involve the public and attract mass participation, stakeholders will launch a ROOTs mobile app to raise awareness and mobilize funds needed to procure, plant and maintain the 40 million trees across the country.
“Members of the public will be asked to contribute only Shs1,500 via the mobile phone app. This cost caters for seedling, the the planting exercise, manning the tree until it is at a stage where it can survive on its own and for paying TREE ADOPTION the company that is responsible for continuous monitoring and evaluation of this process,” officials said.
The Running out of Trees campaign is a 5-year project seeking to plant over 200 million trees in that period.
This is the second year running that Uganda Breweries is spearheading this partnership with the Ministry of Water and Environment.
Uganda Breweries Limited has also over the years contributed to other Tree Planting Initiatives and has so far, planted over 300 hectares of trees in Navugulu central forest reserve, Gangu forest reserve & Nawandigi Forest Reserve at the corporate level and staff-led initiatives that have seen massive tree planting in Kamokoli community in Eastern Uganda and Nabitoli Catholic Parish, Budaka in Wakiso with different partnerships like NFA and Rotary Club.