GREENING GHANA : A CONCERN FOR EVERYONE

How concerning that some Ghanaians are responsible for harming the green environment. Simply put, their voracious appetite for destroying the green environment is legendary.

I should also admit that their actions, which basically are cause of deforestation are alarming and unfortunate.

No intend to vilify or harshly criticise some Ghanaian about their unconsciousness towards green environment, but as good citizen it behoves on us all to think right, and keep the environment green and safe for the benefit of today and the future generations.

I dare say that there’s no gratification in pressing hard self-destructive button by blatantly disregarding environmental justice. How sad we sometimes become own enemies.

Negative Effects of Deforestation
It’s extremely important and essential to address deforestation and promote greeny environment to mitigate far-reaching negative effects which directly affect the environment, human societies and wildlife.

These negative effects of deforestation include climate change, soil erosion, increased greenhouse gas emission, and impact on human health. Others are reduction in income from sustainable forest products and ecotourism, disruption in water cycle, increased air and water pollution, and d

Lest we stop, we must continue to raise awareness, support sustainable forest management, and promote other practices that address deforestation challenge.

Collective Responsibility Towards Afforestation
Afforestation is everyone’s business, considering it’s numerous benefits to the environment and all living creatures.
We should therefore share the responsibility to protect the environment and ensure a sustainable future.

By this responsibility, we will enhance air and water quality for human health, provide habitat for wildlife and preserve ecosystems, as well as support rural livelihoods and community development.

We will, by our collective effort, maintain water cycles, ensure water quality, minimize greenhouse gas emissions, mitigate climate change, and support biodiversity and ecosystem services, among other benefits.

Ownership of Afforestation Activities
If modesty permitted, I would suggest that, as Ghanaians, we should avoid politicizing sensitive issues like health, education, and the environment.

Whenever laudable national policies, programmes, and activities were handled by politicians or perceived to be political, they short-lived. There are examples of fine national policies, programmes, and activities initiated by governments but failed to live-on due to lack of political will, lack of funding, lack of legal backing or support to sustain them.

I hope that, Green Ghana Project
which by my own estimation is laudable programme would not suffer same fate in future for the above-mentioned reasons. Never mind, I am only seeking to exorcise the ghost here and now.

Support for Policy-making and Forest Management
Sound forest management and policy-making are vital for preserving the integrity and resilience of forests, which are indispensable for sustaining biodiversity, regulating the climate, and supporting human well-being and prosperity.

It’s therefore imperative to support policy-making and forest management by equipping them with resources, expertise, and coordination to help governments, organizations, and communities develop and implement effective policies and practices for sustainable forest management.

Cultivating the Habit of Afforestation
Afforestation should be a regular habit. While I acknowledge the significant impact of the Green Ghana Project (Green Ghana Day) since 2021, considering the vast scale of deforestation, and high impact of climate change, I believe that afforestation should become an ongoing practice, not just a one-time event.

Yes!. We need to make afforestation a consistent habit to effectively combat the enormity of these environmental challenges.

By embracing afforestation as a regular practice, we can cultivate a path towards a more sustainable tomorrow, where our environment, communities, and future generations can thrive.

Laws Relating to Deforestation
The government of Ghana affirms its commitment to addressing deforestation and promoting sustainable forest management through a range of legal and policy initiatives.

These laws, regulations, and policies are Forest Protection (Amendment) Act, 2002 (Act 624); Timber Resources Management Act, 1998 (Act 547); Forest Plantation Development Fund Act, 2002 (Act 623), and Forest Act, 1992 (Act 462).

Others are Environmental Protection Agency Act, 1994 (Act 490); Wildlife Conservation Act, 1971 (Act 359); Ghana Forest and Wildlife Policy (2012), a Land Act, 1994 (Act 492); Ghana National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan (2011); and Water Resources Commission Act, 1996 (Act 522).


Enforcement of Laws
It’s too obvious that Ghana has established a clear legal framework to safeguard its forests, striking a balance between economic progress and environmental stewardship, and ensuring a sustainable future for all.

By implementing and enforcing these laws and policies effectively, Ghana can promote sustainable development, protect natural resources for future generations, and address climate change crisis .

For emphasis, effective enforcement and implementation remain crucial for sustaining green environment for future generations.

 

Conclusion

As we stand at the threshold of a critical era in human history, we are faced with a choice: to continue down the path of destruction, or to pave the way for a sustainable future. Deforestation, a scourge that has ravaged our planet for far too long, must be brought to an end. It is our moral obligation to protect the world’s forests, not just for the sake of the environment, but for the very survival of humanity.


Let us join hands in support of afforestation activities, and work tirelessly to restore the lungs of our earth. Together, we can create a world where forests thrive, biodiversity flourishes, and future generations inherit a planet that is healthy, vibrant, and full of life. The time to act is now. Let us rise to the challenge, and let the beauty of nature be our guiding light towards a brighter tomorrow.

 

By Thomas Asem Awuah, Assistant PRO of KMA (0243180405)

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