The Government has said that Kenyans planted over 15 million trees during the National Tree Growing Day.
“The manual tallying as of November 14, 2023, shows that the country planted over 150 million trees,” Gov’t Spokesperson Isaac Mwaura.
Mwaura added that so far, a total of 10,794,604 trees have been documented in the Jaza Miti App.
“The Ministry is therefore calling upon all stakeholders to support the tree growing programme to achieve our 500 million trees short rains target.”
The spokesperson added that the tree-growing program targets to restore 10.6 million ha of forest.
The areas are the rehabilitation of degraded dryland landscapes; Growing of agroforestry trees on farmlands; Establishment of commercial private forests; and the Rehabilitation of degraded water towers, wetlands, and riparian areas outside gazetted forests among others.
However, according to the Jaza Miti App, the total number of planted trees since last month is 135,452,372.
The Kenya Forestry Research Institute (KEFRI) says this constitutes 120.84%.
President William Ruto had in December 2022 launched the App, to allow Kenyans or institutions to document their tree-planting activities.
Environment Cabinet Secretary Soipan Tuya stated that the ministry targets to plant 500 million trees during the short rains.
“During the long rains period of April–June 2024, we will grow 1 billion seedlings to reach our target,” she said on November 7, 2023.
Article 69(1) (b) of the Constitution of Kenya 2010 emphasises the need to work to achieve and maintain a tree cover of at least 10 per cent of the land area of Kenya.
Results generated from the recent National Forest Resources Assessment 2021 indicate that Kenya has 7,180,000.66ha of tree cover, representing 12.13 per cent of the total area.
From the assessment, up to 37 counties out of the 47 (79 per cent) have a tree cover percentage greater than the constitutional set target of 10 per cent tree cover.
In addition, results reveal that the country has a tree cover per capita index of 1,507.48m2 per person.
The findings indicate that the country has 5,226,191.79ha of national forest cover, which represents 8.83 per cent of the total area