An organization that works on reforestation efforts in East Africa says forests occupied 30 percent of ethiopia at the end of the 19th century. The figure today is hardly four percent, which is a matter of concern. Lack of green cover led to adverse effects of Climate change, which had to be reversed. Hence, it decided to launch the tree-planting drive. The result was a record of sorts because it planted more than 350 million trees in 12 hours on Monday. Officials claim it to be a world record.

CNN reports the tree planting drive was Ethiopia’s effort to rebuild the lost green cover.

It was a part of the "Green Legacy" campaign spearheaded by the country's Prime Minister. He is Abiy Ahmed and within the first six hours, his fellow citizens planted 150 million trees. His encouragement via Twitter led to the planting of more than 350 million by the end of 12 hours. In 2017, India undertook a similar exercise and planted 66 million in 12 hours.

Woes of Ethiopia

Ethiopia is a landlocked country and climate change has played havoc with its people. Agriculture is the livelihood for a majority of the Ethiopians. However, it has been plagued by droughts and floods coupled with situations like land degradation, and soil erosion.

These are direct results of deforestation. There is a need to restore the balance of nature and bring back the all-important green cover. The country has a long-term plan of planting four billion trees during the rainy season.

CNN goes on to add that in 2017, Ethiopia and other African nations pledged to bring back the greenery to 100 million hectares of land.

It would be a part of an African initiative for a good cause to fight climate change. A recent study estimates that if the lost forests of the world are restored to their original glory, it could reduce the extent of CO2 generated by human activity.

Ethiopia’s tree planting drive

According to The Guardian, the tree-planting drive by Ethiopia is a step in the right direction to ward off the evils of climate change.

The country is prone to drought and its people planted about 350m trees in a day. Its bigger goal is to grow 4bn trees and the government is encouraging each of its citizens to plant at least 40 seedlings. A world minus trees is unthinkable. In the opinion of Dr. Dan Ridley-Ellis of the Edinburgh Napier University, trees help to mitigate climate change. They absorb the carbon dioxide in the air and combat desertification and degradation of land, particularly in arid countries. He explains that there is an intricate link between trees and our lives. They provide food, shelter, fuel, fodder, medicine, materials and protect the water supply. Their roots bind the soil to prevent its erosion and maintain the balance of the Environment. In short, trees are vital to the well being of man and need protection.