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Ghana's President, Prof. John Evans Atta-Mills, yesterday launched a nationwide forest plantation programme dubbed "Greening the Environment for a Better Ghana".
With the nation's forest resources reduced from 8.2 million hectares in 1900 to 1.2 million hectares currently, the project is aimed at halting deforestation. Within the next five years, the project also aims at creating over 51,000 jobs for the youth.
The deletion of the forests and its resources have been largely attributed to the activities of illegal chain saw operators over the years. The president noted that apart from the huge amounts of money lost in terms of revenues, the country's environment has also suffered significantly. Rainfall patterns seem to change every year and floods, massive erosions and destruction of some protected species have all been attributed to these misdeed.
According to the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Mr. Collins Dauda, Ghana loses about 65,000 hectares of forest resources annually to the activities of illegal loggers and chain saw operators. Now for any Ghanaian, this should be a disturbing trend. Though the president has urged the security agencies to beef up efforts to arrest these "anti-environmentalists", the onus lies on all Ghanaians to rise up to this challenge and be ambassadors of this project for our our sake and for posterity.
God bless our homeland Ghana.
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