Let’s reclaim ‘galamsey’ sites for tree planting-Atwimahene
Atwima (Ash), June 15, GNA- Nana Antwi Agyei Brempong II, Atwimahene, has appealed to chiefs and other traditional authorities to collaborate and reclaim lands that have been destroyed due to illegal small-scale mining (galamsey).
The reclaimed lands, he said, could be used to plant trees to help improve the ecosystem.
He said illegal small-scale mining (galamsey) was a threat to sustainable development in the country as it posed serious environmental health issues, and thus, must be checked before it destroyed the country,
“The benefits derived from tree planting far outweigh that of illegal mining,” he told the Ghana News Agency (GNA), adding that the menace had caused more harm than good to the environment and humans.
Nana Antwi Brempong said these on the side-line of a tree planting exercise to mark the ‘Green Ghana Day’ at Atwima in the Atwima-Kwanwoma District of the Ashanti Region.
The exercise saw the chief and his ‘Ashan Tree’ team planting 2,000 tree species to commemorate the Day.
The ‘Ashan Tree’, which is a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), and a brainchild of the Atwimahene, through the River Run Indigenous Plantation (RRIP) Project in collaboration with their Murnau Friends in Germany, have planted 8,000 trees within the past two years.
The river banks and wetlands in Atwima have been planted with different tree species under the Project.
The chief was unhappy with uncontrolled illegal mining saying, the soils in the communities would continue to be contaminated with acid and other chemicals, which could lead to serious health issues.
“Water bodies must be allowed to regenerate their natural ecology through afforestation,” Nana Antwi Brempong told the GNA.
The chief also called for proper monitoring and intense care of the trees that were planted in the various communities to mark the ‘Green Ghana Day’.
The experts, he said, should work to ensure their healthy growth and sustenance in order to be beneficial to the next generation.
He mentioned that trees gave life to humans, prevented erosion, flooding and also helped to improve the deteriorating climatic conditions.
He added that they also helped to conserve the water bodies, served as a good habitat for wildlife and other animals and ensured a good eco-system and suggested that trees be planted around houses even before they were constructed.