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22.10.2008 Social News

Over 45,000 jobs created through reforestation

By gna

Government's massive reforestation programme in 2001 to restore lost vegetation, has created 45,820 permanent jobs and 1.1 million part-time jobs.

Mrs Esther Obeng-Dapaah, Minister of Lands, Forestry and Mines, who announced this on Tuesday in parliament, said that was made possible through the establishment of 140,000 hactares of plantation projects all over the country.

She said to reverse the trend of forest depletion in forest reserves government introduced measures including best forest management practices with support from communities and civil society organisations.

The Minister, who was responding to questions in Parliament, said with the effective implementation of these measures, deforestation would be significantly reduced by the year 2020.

Mrs Obeng-Dapaah said the depletion of some forest areas was as a result of excessive slash and burn agricultural practices, wildfires and illegal logging and chain sawing.

In a related issue, the Minister said an environmental permit was expected to be issued November this year to a company to enable it begin with the harvesting of tree stumps from the Volta Lake.

She said, however, that a final permit from the Forestry Commission was needed before the company, Clark Sustainable Resource Developments Ghana Limited (CSRD), could begin work on the lake.

An agreement to remove tree stumps from the lake was signed in February 2006 between the CSRD and the government of Ghana together with the Volta River Authority.

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