Green Legacy Key to Tackling Global Warming, Regional Integration: Former UNEP Official

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Addis Ababa August 4/2022/ENA/ Ethiopia’s ongoing afforestation program is part of the global effort to tackle global warming, the former UN Environmental Program Deputy Director for Africa Professor Desta Mebratu said.

In an exclusive interview with  ENA, the former deputy director and professor at Stellenbosch and Addis Ababa universities said Ethiopia’s Green Legacy will enhance and facilitate institutional mind-set change across the region.

According to him, the country has been planting seedlings for years and demonstrated how it has worked in enhancing well being of  the ecosystem.

As a result countries in the region will follow this peer learning besides enhancing collaboration and regional integration, he added.

The problem of climate change  (global warming)  is not something that could be addressed by action taken by a single country like Ethiopia, it requires concerted effort of a number of countries, the professor stressed.

Therefore,  facilitating this kind of regional cooperation will help the global movement in terms of addressing climate change.

Afforestation has been promoted as one of the major corrective mechanisms for controlling the impact of climate change across the world, Professor Desta noted, adding that due to this various attempts have been exerted to increase forest coverage of countries across the world through different mechanisms.

Ethiopia’s ongoing afforestation program is part of the global effort to tackle global warming as forestation program is still one of the major contributors in tackling global warming because as we increase our forest coverage our ability to reduce impact of climate change will be enhanced.

The Green Legacy Initiative also benefits downstream countries, according to the professor.

In the long run all the benefits generated from the initiative will enhance consistently provision of water and soil fertility to downstream countries as well, he pointed out.

The former UN Environmental Program deputy director recalled that the Green Legacy was proposed during the Nile  Basin Initiative.

“It was one of the initiatives proposed for downstream countries to take part in the improvement of forest coverage and soil management in the upstream county, Ethiopia.”

Professor Desta further elaborated that the initiative was proposed as a collaborative program to benefit all the courtiers. “So, in every term it will be the major benefit for generations. The more, we do this kind of exercise, the better will be the outcome in tackling global warming.”

Forestation program is very much related to poverty reduction and livelihood provision in addressing wellbeing issues to the majority of the people.

The initiative taken by the Government of Ethiopia is very much commendable and this should continue as a culture. “It need not be a certain time campaign. It should be continuously practiced by all communities and countries across the world.”

Ethiopia has been intensifying its plan to plant 20 billion seedlings across the country in four consecutive years since 2019.