Planting trees along roads good idea

The Founder and Convener of the Green Republic Project, Mr Nana Yaw Osei-Darkwa, has called on the Ministry of Roads and Highways to develop a pol­icy that will make it obliga­tory for road contractors to plant trees along the roads they construct.

He explains that the trees will help mitigate the impact of climate change and re­duce carbon emission.

We think the call is not strange neither is it some­thing the Ministry cannot demand of contractors.

Construction projects are classified as residential, commercial, industrial, institutional, infrastructure and environmental and certain specific facilities are demanded under each of them.

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Road projects come under infrastructure construction projects and as part of their execution, certain commu­nities along the roads have some streets tarred, for instance.

Elsewhere, certain roads come with green areas like parks along the way.

Therefore, it is right that the Convener of the Green Republic Project is making that appeal to make tree planting a permanent fea­ture of road construction in the country and we wish the Ministry give it the needed consideration.

It is common knowledge that road construction usu­ally involves the felling of trees and so planting some in a way implies that we are replacing those felled and this is very much necessary, looking at the importance of trees in the environment.

For his area of focus, it is unexpected that the found­er of the Green Republic Project is talking about tree planting and climate change, but trees along roads can serve other purposes too.

While beautifying the environment, the trees can provide shade for pedes­trians and even those on vehicles.

Naturally, they would also help the place become airy and thus make the vicinity of the road a comfort­able and healthy place for people.

From the look of things, the country needs to make use of any little opportunity to plant trees and at any appropriate time when the trees can thrive.

The truth is that most people today do not care much about the health of the environment and its implications for the good of society and so would not make any conscious efforts on their own to maintain the environment.

As such, there is the need to use subtle ways to demand the preservation of the environment for it not to appear as putting the burden on unwilling people.

That is to say the duty of planting trees at where one works must not be the obligation of only road contractors but also all others, including heads of institutions, schools and churches, as well as commu­nity leaders.

The importance of trees should compel everyone to see it as a duty to plant and or nurture a tree because trees are, for instance, said to be the most cost-efficient nature-based solution to capture carbon.

Experts say as trees grow, they take in carbon from the air and store it in wood, plant matter, and in the soil, thereby soaking up lots of carbon dioxide that would otherwise live in the atmo­sphere and make people suffer health effects, includ­ing headaches, dizziness, a tingling or pins or needles feeling, difficulty in breath­ing, increased blood pres­sure and convulsions.

Clearly, the demand for trees anywhere in the envi­ronment is important.

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