Africa-Press – Ethiopia. Ethiopian Biodiversity Institute disclosed that it has planted some 1.8 million indigenous trees during this rainy season as part of the ongoing green legacy Initiative.
In an exclusive interview with ENA, Forest and Rangeland Director at the Institute, Abera Seyuem stated that the nation has so far planted 5.4 million indigenous tree seedlings in various parts of the country since 2019.
He noted that a total of 3.6 million tree seedlings were planted over the past three years, while 1.8 million seedlings have been planted in the current rainy season.
Albida, Afrocarpus falcatus, Albizia grandibracteata, Olea europea and Ficus sur are some of the 6,000 indigenous plants found in Ethiopia, of which more than 1000 are tree plants and 10 percent are endemic, it was learned.
Developing forests with indigenous trees provides multifaceted importance to Ethiopia as they are early adoptable to the country’s ecosystem, easily survive challenges in the environment and can resist water shortage as compared to other kinds of trees.
According to Abera, indigenous trees are also vital for the continuity of bio-diversity because if they disappear the ecosystem will be affected.
In order to tap the economic and environmental benefits of indigenous trees in Ethiopia, the institute is working to enhance the conservation of these trees in-Situ Conservation and Ex- situ conservation mechanisms, he said.
The Institute is undertaking various activities to conserve Ethiopia’s indigenous trees across the country by engaging communities, pertinent government and non-government organizations.
In this regard, he further stated the institute is engaged in propagating indigenous tree seedlings in its nurseries located in various parts of the country in order to popularize the development of the trees across the nations.
The Director further indicated that the ongoing Green Legacy Initiative is one of the mechanisms that the institute has been employing in its efforts to restore the plant species and ecosystem damaged due to various challenges in the country.