RIYADH: The first workshop to study the Saudi Green Initiative afforestation plan will be held on Sunday.
The project aims to study the reality and future of afforestation in Saudi Arabia to achieve the target set by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to plant 10 billion trees in the Kingdom, or the equivalent of rehabilitating 40 million hectares, during the coming decades in order to reach prosperous and sustainable vegetation.
Saudi Minister of Environment, Water and Agriculture Abdul Rahman Al-Fadhli, who is also the chairman of the board of directors of the National Center for Vegetation Cover and Combating Desertification, sponsored the workshop.
It is the first of many that will be held during the project implementation, aiming to collect information, exchange experiences, coordinate efforts, and activate partnerships between the various parties participating in the project.
These workshops will be devoted to the public and private sectors, the nonprofit sector, in addition to the financial, academic and research sectors.
By holding these workshops in cooperation with several local partners and international experts, the National Center for Vegetation Cover and Combating Desertification seeks to assess the reality of afforestation in the Kingdom, determine its future needs, as well as develop mechanisms for implementing field surveys and rules for developing digital maps, and establish a geospatial electronic platform for afforestation.
The ultimate goal is to reach a comprehensive strategic plan for afforestation and develop an execution plan to manage partnerships with various sectors and entities.
The center is also working on implementing a large number of projects to enhance vegetation cover through planting trees, spreading seeds, protecting and controlling vegetation sites, rehabilitating degraded ones, detecting encroachments, combating logging, and protecting and investing in forests and national parks, which promotes sustainable environmental and economic development.
Both the Saudi Green Initiative and the Middle East Green Initiative aim to plant 50 billion trees in total across the region and reduce carbon emissions by more than 10 percent of global contributions.
They come as part of the Kingdom’s endeavors to strengthen regional and international partnerships to face and overcome environmental challenges, protect the planet and combat climate change.