ASEc Commends Progress in Ghana’s Green Ghana Project, Calls for Policy Reform on Deforestation

  Fri, 21 Jun 2024
Press Release ASEc Commends Progress in Ghana’s Green Ghana Project, Calls for Policy Reform on Deforestation

The Alliance for Sustainability Education (ASEc) applauds the remarkable progress made through Ghana's Green Ghana Project, an ambitious afforestation initiative launched in 2021 to combat deforestation and restore the nation's diminishing forest cover. Since its inception, the project has seen the planting of 41 million trees, with 30 million thriving at various stages of growth.

In the maiden year of 2021, the Green Ghana Project successfully planted over seven million trees, followed by 24 million in 2022 and 10.7 million in 2023. Notably, the survival rates of these trees have shown significant improvement, with a 67% survival rate in 2021, 72% in 2022, and 81% in 2023. The government plans to plant an additional 10 million trees on June 7 this year, further demonstrating its commitment to a greener future.

Despite these commendable efforts, Ghana continues to face significant challenges in preserving its forest cover. The country's forests are being lost at an alarming rate of 3% annually. This drastic reduction can be attributed to several factors, including the enactment of Legislative Instrument (L.I.) 2462, which has facilitated rampant mining activities.

L.I. 2462 has been a critical point of contention as it permits extensive mining operations, even in biodiversity hotspots. Since its enactment, over eight leases have been granted for mining in these sensitive areas, with another fourteen threatening to erode more of Ghana's forests. This legislative framework undermines the progress made through the Green Ghana Project by enabling activities that lead to deforestation and environmental degradation.

"The contradiction between afforestation efforts and permissive mining laws highlights a significant policy gap that needs to be addressed," said Andrews Aibi Junior, ASEc Lead Convener. "While the Green Ghana Project showcases the government's intention to restore and protect forest cover, the concurrent allowance for mining activities through L.I. 2462 demonstrates a lack of cohesive and sustainable environmental policy."

Forests play a crucial role in combating global warming by acting as carbon sinks. Therefore, maintaining and expanding forest cover is essential for mitigating climate change. ASEc believes that for Ghana to achieve a truly green future, there must be a balanced approach that includes strict accountability and enforcement of environmental protection laws.

"The progress made through afforestation initiatives must not be undone by legislative defects that prioritize short-term economic gains over long-term environmental sustainability," [Mr. Andrews Aibi Junior added. "It is imperative for the government to revisit and revise laws like L.I. 2462 to ensure that they do not contradict or negate the efforts to restore and protect forest ecosystems."

ASEc calls on the government, policymakers, and all stakeholders to take immediate action to harmonize Ghana's environmental policies. By addressing these contradictions and strengthening legal frameworks, Ghana can continue to make strides in afforestation and lead the way in sustainable development.

About ASEc
The Alliance for Sustainability Education (ASEc) is a dedicated group of climate action enthusiasts and sustainability advocates. In a world where climate change awareness and education are often neglected despite their severe impacts, our mission is to inspire, educate, and empower individuals and communities. ASEc focuses on promoting small, practical, and immediate actions to combat climate change and build a greener, more sustainable future for all.

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