Tanzania: Creation of a micro-forest to mitigate the effects of climate change

VOLUNTEERS from the Ismaili community joined technical staff from the Aga Khan Foundation (AKF) to establish a micro-forest in Dar es Salaam, an initiative to slow the effects of climate change.

The project will also be implemented in 35 secondary schools located in Dar es Salaam, Lindi as well as Zanzibar.

Representing the Vice President of the Aga Khan National Council for Tanzania, Nazir Thawer, at the event in Dar es Salaam recently, Mr. Hussein Somji said the 200-tree microforest project was part of a larger initiative of the Ismaili Shia Muslim community around the world.

“This activity is part of a larger initiative in which the Shia Ismaili Muslim community around the world has united around its centuries-old tradition of serving humanity by rendering voluntary service to improve the quality of life. of the communities in which she lives, regardless of faith, gender and origin,” said Somji, who is the Chairman of the Eastern Committee of the Aga Khan National Council in Tanzania.

He said Tanzania is one of the countries vulnerable to climate change with fragile ecosystems and its economy largely depends on climate-sensitive sectors, such as agriculture, fisheries, forestry and tourism.

Explaining climate change to humanity, he said: “These events are having devastating effects on human livelihoods and movement.”

He added that the volunteers, dubbed “climate champions”, planted around 165 seeds and 200 saplings to establish the microforest, also known as the community forest.

He added that mini-forests are a hyper-local response and solution to large-scale environmental challenges like climate change and global warming.

“Forests attract biodiversity, including insects and new plant species, and research shows that these small patches of nature can contribute to carbon sequestration – the process of capturing and storing atmospheric carbon dioxide) and help cities to adapt to rising temperatures,” he insisted.

Demonstrating how to set up the mini-forest project, Aga Khan Foundation (AKF) expert Didier Van Bignoot said that one can establish a micro-forest in an area of ​​just 300 square meters.

The expert said ten million acres of trees around the world are cleared every year for agriculture-related activities and other development projects, insisting that such a process is “suicidal “.

After the demonstration, volunteers planted 25 species of trees and shrubs on an area of ​​300 square meters located in Masaki.

Teresa H. Sadler