KARACHI - The Sindh government will start implementing its project to conduct urban forestry in the province within a month as Karachi is going to be the first city to undergo the massive plantation drive.

Sindh Minister for Forests and Wildlife disclosed this information while speaking as the chief guest at a dialogue on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) organised at Karachi Gymkhana by National Forum for Environment and Health (NFEH).

The forest minister urged the concerned philanthropists, non-governmental organisations, and corporate sector to come forward and actively participate in the upcoming urban forestry drive of the provincial government.

He said that provincial Forests Department had duly identified the sites in Karachi where tree plantation would be carried out to promote urban forestry as places along the banks of Malir, Lyari Rivers and other major storm water drains would be the most suitable places to do such an activity.

He said that plants and trees of native species would be mostly used to undertake this forestry campaign.

He said that urban forestry campaign had been designed on the directives of Chairman of Pakistan Peoples Party Bilawal Bhutto Zardari for the sake of conserving environment of main cities of the province and to reverse the harmful effects of pollution.

The provincial minister said that in the previous week, he had convened the meeting of the concerned stakeholders including Local Government minister and Mayor Karachi to consult them on the upcoming urban forestry initiative in the city.

He said that gradually the urban forestry programme would be expanded to other divisional headquarters of the province also.

He said the Forest Department had also been conducting the campaign to get vacated forest land in the province under illegal occupation.

Nasir Hussain Shah, who also holds the portfolio of Sindh Works and Services Department, said that he had ordered officials concerned that the tree plantation should become a compulsory component of the development schemes regarding building of new roads in the entire province.