KFS to plant 16M trees this year, says County Ecosystem Conservator John Chepkwony Kidogo

Kenya Forest Service in Kericho county is set to plant some 16 million tree seedlings this year.

According to the county ecosystem conservator John Chepkwony Kidogo,the county targets to plant some 15 billion seedlings in ten years.

At the moment county forest cover stands at 23.23 per cent.After ten years.the county forest boss said the forest cover will have rose to 42 per cent.

The boss said the 15 million yearly target is progressively doing well after KFS cracked down illegal logging,grazing of livestock and removal of illegal settlers from the forest.

Kidogo said KFS is targetting to plant some 15 million seedlings on some 11,000 hectares and progressively reach some 15 billion seedlings in ten years on 110,000 hectares.

The dream of reaching the 10 year target will be achieved only if stakeholders in forest cover support KFS in the county,Kidogo said.

So far so good,Kidogo said localtea industries and Non Governmental Organizations have entered into an MOU in the forest conservation.

The forest boss was speaking to the Star on how the county was prepared to reach the 42 per cent forest cover in ten years time at time when illegal logging and livestock grazing was going on unchecked.

Kenya Forestry Collegeprincipal in Londiani Elizabeth Wambugu said some 300 forest rangers who are certificate and diploma holders have released to take part in the environmental conservation.

Mrs Wambugu admitted the number of such rangers was small given the kind of work needed to have forest cover achieved in ten years.

She said the college is targetting to raise the number of the rangers from 200 to 400 per year upon the expansion of hotels and classrooms.