Six thousand trees were planted on Saturday at the Samakki Natural Protected Community in Kampong Speu province as part of a campaign to plant 100,000 trees across the Kingdom this year.
Khieu Borin, director general of the Local Community General Department at the Environment Ministry, said the planting event was aimed at protecting and conserving natural resources. He added that it also aimed to increase the participation of local communities in protecting the environment.
“The activity aims to contribute to forest restoration and instil a love of the forest among people,” he said. “Communities in conservation areas must strive to protect it [the forest] for their benefit in the future.”
He also called on the youth to participate in tree planting activities to increase forest grounds and reduce the effects of climate change.
“Every youth should plant at least one tree every year,” he said. “So if we have 10 million youths, and they can plant a tree each, the forest will expand in our country and benefit our country [by] making the weather cool, bringing rain, and improving agriculture.”
Mr Borin said the ministry is currently overseeing 56 protected areas, spanning across 7.5 million hectares.
Tan Kimsour, a representative of the Khmer Artist Association and a youth volunteer who participated in the tree planting, said the event is part of a campaign to plant 100,000 trees this year.
He said the campaign, themed ‘Together to Cure the Earth’s Wound’, is supported by the Environment Ministry, Agriculture Ministry, Kampong Speu provincial authorities, and Khmer Artist Association.
“This activity demonstrates public participation to protect and preserve natural resources, which are valuable to society,” he said.
Chorn Chanlakhena, an artist and who also participated in the event, appealed to the public to protect forests and not participate in illegal logging.
“Please participate more in the protection and conservation of forests, which are lungs of the earth,” Ms Chanlakhena said.
Mom Sam Ath, director of the Samakki Natural Protected Community, lauded the reforestation initiative.
“The community is happy to participate in planting trees, and I hope in the future, more people would be more environmentally aware and know the value of natural resources,” he said.
According to the Ministry of Environment, in addition to Kampong Speu, volunteers also planted trees in Battambang, Siem Reap, and Oddar Meanchey provinces, where 15,000 trees were planted.