Murkomen, KPA lead tree-planting exercise at the Coast

Roads and Transport CS Kipchumba Murkomen led Mombasa residents in planting 10,000 trees in Mikindani, Jomvu sub-county.

Murkomen said his ministry targets to plant 30 million trees, with 20 million being planted by the State Department for Roads and 10 million by the State Department for Transport.

“So far, the State Department for Roads has planted 415,000 trees, while the State Department for Transport has managed 16,100 trees. During these short rains, we expect all agencies and divisions to meet half their targets by December 30,” he said.

Murkomen said the State Departments for Roads and Transport will continue planting trees throughout the year and meet respective targets by June next year.

“Deforestation, urbanisation, industrial development, agricultural expansion and unsustainable agricultural practices are undermining the ability of ecosystems to sustain food production, maintain freshwater and forest resources, as well as regulate climate and air quality,” he said.

Murkomen said Mombasa, with a population of 1,208,333 people, currently has a tree cover of 23.75 per cent.

The CS added that the 10-year tree-growing target for Mombasa stands at 7.4 million trees and during the short rains, the target is 248,415 trees.

“I have also learnt that the county government’s seedlings propagation target is 1.1 million seedlings. So far, 165,421 trees have been planted in this county under the Jaza Miti Initiative,” he said, adding that the transport sector leaves significant carbon footprints that require the planting of trees as a mitigation measure.

In Kwale, the Kenya Ports Authority and local Beach Management Units (BMUs) planted 10,000 mangrove seedlings along River Mwachema in Tiwi.

KPA chairman Benjamini Tayari said they will continue working with locals in conservation.

Tayari promised to ensure communities living near ports benefit from the KPA Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities.

KPA Managing Director Captain William Ruto pledged to ensure proper monitoring and surveillance of the restored mangrove sites within the estuary.

"We will monitor to allow what we have planted today to grow to maturity," he said.