The British Council in Bangladesh recently arranged an event of indigenous tree plantation as a part of their environmental policy of managing the cultural relations work in a sustainable manner as possible across their platforms and programmes.
Barbara Wickham, Director Bangladesh attended this event of planting indigenous trees in Kutubdia, an island of Cox’s Bazar district under Chittagong division located in the Bay of Bengal. This island is heavily vulnerable to frequent cyclones and tidal waves and in constant threats of land erosion which is an eventual threat of eradication of the mangrove forest. In order to protect the ecosystem of this region, the British Council has taken this project called ‘Mangrove Forest Rehabilitation Project, Kutubdia’. The objective of this project is to plant and take care of 6,000 mangrove samplings on Kutubdia during the year 2017-18. Especially, planting 6,000 indigenous shrubs will be advantageous for marine environment and ecosystem. Secondly, it will protect mangrove forests and reduce the land erosion and retain the purity of local ecosystem. Moreover, creating national and international awareness on carbon footprint is another goal. It will be an effective, long-term relationship among the British Council, Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO), forest rangers and local community.
Focusing on the need for environmental awareness, Barbara said, “The magnitude of protection we actually get from these mangrove forests are somewhat ignored which is not an issue to be ignored. We have taken this ‘Mangrove Rehabilitation Project’ as a step towards our carbon footprint policy and becoming a carbon neutral organisation. We feel the dire need to sustain this resourceful area as a shield for the entire country and request other organisations to do the same for avoiding catastrophic natural disasters to come”. Under this project, a suitable mangrove plantation site will be identified, where the forest ranger will provide an expert opinion and work plan for the schedule and approach to plant 6,000 mangrove saplings. The UNO will be responsible for overall implementation and management of the whole project. The UNO and local forest ranger officer will open and maintain a bank account under this project.
Also, a specialist appointed by the British Council will visit the plantation site twice to monitor the growth of the project and submit a report after each visit.