In response to the loss of forest cover, the Togolese authorities have set their sights on annual reforesting 14 million trees in 2023, with the aim of restoring 1,000 hectares of degraded land.
As is the tradition in Togo, the annual reforestation campaign will be launched on 1 June. For this 2023 edition, the Togolese government is counting on the planting of 14 million trees on 11,000 hectares of land, compared to 5.2 million on 8,256 hectares of land in 2022. The initiative mobilises civil society, economic operators and local authorities.
The reforestation operation led by Togo’s Minister of Environment and Forest Resources, Foli-Bazi Katari, aims to fight against global warming which, alongside human action, is the primary cause of deforestation in this West African country. “There has been an evolution in terms of results obtained, but we cannot be 100% satisfied since our country’s objective is to restore its entire forest and vegetation cover in the long term,” explains Foli-Bazi Katari.
Among the Togolese towns where land degradation has increased in recent years is Aneho, 46 km from the capital Lomé. To reverse the trend, Sogea-Satom, the subsidiary of the French public works group Vinci, in partnership with the non-governmental organisation (NGO) Vert Plus, recently planted 2,000 mangroves as part of its CSR (corporate social responsibility) initiative. This is a species of tree found in mangroves. The mangrove tree keeps part of its trunk under the salt water of the coast and rivers.
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This eco-responsible initiative comes at a time when the Togolese government is accelerating the implementation of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 15 (SDG15), which focuses on the protection of biodiversity. Thus, a team of scientists has been installed in the first half of 2023 to work on the restoration of forests decimated by drought and natural disasters. The National Committee for Sustainable Development (CNDD) is working with the Togolese branches of environmental protection organisations and other development partners such as the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).