Ministry of Environment, Education Collaborate in Tree Planting

In a remarkable move towards environmental sustainability, the Cabinet Secretaries for the Ministry of Environment, Climate Change, and Forestry, Hon. Soipan Tuya, and the Ministry of Education, Hon. Ezekiel Machogu, co-chaired an inter-ministerial meeting on April 1st, 2024. This meeting marked a crucial step in the collaboration between the two ministries in the ambitious 15 billion National Tree Growing Programme.

At the center of this initiative lies the Ministry of Education (MoE), tasked with mobilizing Kenya’s vast educational infrastructure to contribute to the nation’s tree-planting goals. With over 17 million learners and 600,000 educators spread across the country, the MoE plays a pivotal role in achieving the target of growing 35 million trees and producing 300 million seedlings annually.

The 15 billion National Tree Growing Programme forms a cornerstone of Kenya’s climate action agenda, aiming to elevate the nation’s tree cover from the current 12.2% to 30% by 2032. This initiative seeks to restore 10.6 million hectares of degraded ecosystems and landscapes across 11 intervention areas, as outlined in the 10-year National Landscape and Ecosystem Restoration Strategy.


Since its inception, the Ministry of Environment, Climate Change, and Forestry (MECCF) has made significant strides within the ‘whole-of-government, whole-of-society’ approach. Achievements include the development of the National Landscape and Ecosystem Restoration Strategy 2023-2032, the establishment of 11 new seed centers, the distribution of 100 metric tons of seeds, and the oversight of the growing of 300 million seedlings across the country, among other initiatives.

A highlight of the program was National Tree Growing Day, celebrated as Kenya’s first green holiday on November 13th, 2023. On this historic day, over 150 million trees were planted nationwide, with His Excellency President Dr. William Ruto leading the efforts at Kiu Wetland in Makueni County.

Following the inter-ministerial meeting, both ministries pledged to enhance their collaboration in tree growing. MECCF committed to providing 15,000 kilograms of tree seeds annually to support the MoE’s seedling production targets. Technical support from the Kenya Forest Service (KFS) and Kenya Forestry Research Institute (KEFRI) will aid in seedling production and tree-growing practices. To improve the recording and reporting of tree-growing operations, coordination frameworks will be strengthened to include the county and sub-county levels. Digital applications will also be integrated.

Furthermore, plans are underway to develop an award scheme for recognizing top-performing educational institutions and to mobilize resources for seedling production through innovative financing mechanisms. This collaborative effort between the Ministries of Education and Environment signals a unified approach towards sustainable development, demonstrating Kenya’s commitment to environmental stewardship and education for future generations.

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