Islamabad (HRNW): A target of planting 100 million trees throughout the country has been set for the upcoming four-month monsoon season, which will start from June, 15. “A set target of 100 million trees that would be planted under the Prime Minister’s five-year Green Pakistan Programme during the monsoon season” said an official here on Tuesday. To a question he said, “The Green Pakistan Programme has been launched as a national cause and as a part of the government’s efforts to protect the country and its people from devastating impacts of climate change include floods, which have shown rise in intensity and frequency over recent years”. He said that forests were effective way to boost the country’s climate change resilience against negative fall outs of the climate change.
Government has set a target of planting 100 million trees till 2021 under Prime Minister’s Green Pakistan Programme. Forests can slow down floodwater flows by 72 hours, besides that forests are also important to mitigate climate change impacts, particularly floods. Currently, reports say, forests on 27,000 hectares chopped annually in the country. If this speed of deforestation continues the severity of impacts of climate change has been increased in shape of floods, heat waves, dust storms, urban flooding, land erosion and landslides and, health problems.
At present four to five percent of the total area of Pakistan or 3.2 to 4 million hectares area is under forest. Pakistan has been ranked the 7th most affected county among the 135 countries in world because of climate change disasters from 1996 -2015, according to the German Watch Index. While according to Climate Change Ministry reports, he added, Pakistan requires Rs 700 to Rs 1400 billion annually to deal with climate change impacts, particularly in the agriculture, energy, transport, infrastructure, irrigation network, health and education sectors.