Moyo schools urged to embrace tree planting

todayMarch 16, 2023

By Inyakuni Kennedy


Education institutions in Moyo District both government aided and private have been challenged to embrace tree planting as a means to mitigate the effect of climate change that has become a global threat. The move is to avoid and reduce emissions of heat-trapping greenhouse gases into the atmosphere to prevent the planet from warming to more extreme temperatures.
In a bit to avoid and reduce on climate crisis, the experts said there is need to altering behavior and systems to protect families, economies, and the environment from the impacts of climate change.
The call for the institutions in the District to improve on their skills of tree planting is sparked by the disappearing of natural vegetation in the community coursed human activities which resulted into global warming in the country.
The Uganda Forestry Policy recognizes tree growing on farms for provision of firewood, poles, non-wood products, fruits and even timber. Through this policy, the government pledges to build the capacity of NGOs, CBOs and private contractors as well as government agencies to provide agroforestry advice and training.

According to Asusi JB Sam, the Moyo district secretary for natural resources, although the district has benefited a lot from tree planting projects supported by government and development partners , many of the trees have died because of poor management of woodlots by the institutions in the district.
Asusi adds that institutions like schools and health centers should embrace tree planting to mitigate effects of climate change. “We must transition from powering our world with fossil fuels to using clean, renewable energy. And we need to stop deforestation and restore our natural habitats until we reach net-zero carbon emissions” he remarked.
A mini survey conducted in few selected schools in Moyo district shows many of the schools having some tree spices planted within their compound but managing the tree have become big issue.

Pupils planting tree

Mr. Mawadri James Edema is the school head teacher of Lohwa primary in Metu Sub County blame the local community for continued destruction of plant trees by grazing animals in despite of the efforts made by the school administrations. “We tried to planting trees but the communities always temper with the seedlings. Like we planted fruit tree given by Uganda National Teacher’s Union (UNATU), and they didn’t survive because the community sometimes graze animals on the school compound and as result the trees did not survive”, Mawadri adds. Climate change is a problem that can greatly affect the lives and education of students. It can make schools unsuitable for learning, and reduce the quality of education. On The other hand climate change lead to food and water scarcity, lost livelihoods, increases in gender-based violence, and lower education levels. One of the major challenges affecting Government’s efforts aimed at restoring forest cover in particular and promoting tree planting generally is inadequate funding. In 2003, the Government of Uganda established a National Tree Fund to promote tree planting and growing in Uganda. For a number of reasons, this Fund has never taken off.
However Mr. Okudi Edward the head teacher of Dufile seed secondary school in Dufile sub county notes that many schools in the district have not taken tree planting project as an important component to mitigate the effects of global warming. “Okudi stretched that some of the trees projects in other schools are just to whom may concern because after planting the trees, they manage themselves. Planting tree is like having a project, and when you initiate a project, you must maintain it for a better result”, said Okudi.

But, Mawa Bashir, a resident of pamoju village in Aluru sub county Moyo district attributed this to lack of knowledge on the significance of planting trees not only in schools or health centers but also in the community. He also said many schools in the district are sitting on public land because they don’t have land that can allow them to take tree planting project. Mawa has called for empowerment of the local population on the importance of the tree planting.
Uganda is one of the countries losing forest cover at a very alarming rate. It is reported that within a period of 15 years, Uganda’s forest cover had reduced by approximately 1.3 million hectares.

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