The Konza Technopolis Development Authority (KoTDA) has carried out a tree planting exercise in support of the National Tree Growing Restoration Campaign that was launched by President William Ruto in December 2022, which calls for an increase in the national tree cover to 30% by 2032. Further, the exercise is in regards to the presidential directive on August 3, 2023 to accelerate tree growing in Konza. The exercise targets to grow one million trees in one year.
To facilitate this, the Konza Masterplan has set aside 1,600 acres to be landscaped into public parks, open spaces and green corridor. KoTDA has set aside 50 acres of land that has the capacity to generate 10 million seedlings annually. Currently, 250,000 seedlings have been propagated in the smart nursery and are ready for tree planting.
(TOP: John Paul Okwiri, the Konza Technopolis Development Authority – KoTDA – acting CEO, explains the characteristics of the smart tree nursery that is the source of seedlings being replanted in the forestation program).
Speaking during the rapid response initiative on tree growing at the Konza Technopolis, KoTDA acting CEO John Paul Okwiri said that the organization’s smart tree nursery is an innovative operation that the institution had set up to ensure higher quality seedlings to ensure tree survival rate.
“We set up this nursery last year with a target to grow 10 million tree seedlings that are site matched and suitable for the arid and semi-arid climates,” said Okwiri.
It includes a smart tree management technology for Konza Technopolis which will be able to track various characteristics of the trees such as the air quality, sunlight level, sound pollution level, and other important characteristics for efficient city planning, afforestation plans, and higher quality of life.
He added that the Authority is running the program ahead of this year’s Africa Climate Change Week and the Africa Climate Summit which are scheduled to be held in Nairobi during the first week of September 2023.
In the past one year, KoTDA has grown 30,000 trees and 200,000 shrubs in some sections of the smart city and donated 100,000 seedlings to the community. The Authority is also working in partnership with Ministries, Departments and Agencies to plan, grow and nurture a minimum of thirty trees per year per staff in line with the 20th cycle of the Performance Contracting 2023-2024.
“We are inviting all private sector organizations to join us in growing trees at Konza Technopolis to establish a smart green city,” noted Okwiri.
Other partners who participated in the event included the Global Peace Foundation, the World Bank and the Rotary Club of Nairobi, Chyullu Development Fund, and the University of Nairobi among others.