Published On: Thu, Aug 20th, 2015

WWF-Pakistan, Burger King initiate nationwide plantation drive

Participants at Karachi University

Staff Report

KARACHI: The World Wildlife Fund for Nature (WWF) Pakistan, in partnership with Burger King (BK), has initiated a nationwide plantation drive as part of Burger King’s Adopt a Tree programme. Through the programme, proceeds from BK’s Classic King Box will be contributed to the cause. The drive was launched today with the plantation of 500 trees at the University of Karachi.

The activity aims to engage schools, corporate, civil society organizations and media houses to create awareness among the public at large to support this initiative and plant more trees to enhance the beauty of the city and increase tree cover of the area.

The recent heat wave in Sindh, especially Karachi, claimed more than 1,300 lives. It has been observed that the city is becoming devoid of trees, resulting in an imbalance in the ecosystem. Due to the cutting of trees, drastic climatic impacts are also being witnessed, which are posing threats to human life as well as other biodiversity in the city.

Talking to the media, Dr Moazzam Khan, Registrar, Karachi University said that it is not only the responsibility of the government but every citizen to participate in plantation campaigns and plant trees for a better environment. He also said that they have planned massive plantation drives in Karachi where students, teachers and people from other walks of life can participate.

He also emphasised the need to plant endangered and rare native plant species in the country as they are environmentally more beneficial. ‘There is a need for joint efforts to mitigate the impacts of climate change and the media can play a key role in educating and changing the mind-set of people,’ he added.

Participants at Karachi University (2)

Speaking on the occasion, Asad Shahbaz Khan, Assistant Manager, Corporate Partnerships and Fundraising department, WWF-Pakistan said that trees are necessary to safeguard the Earth from adverse impacts of global warming and climate change.

Trees are the lungs of the land, which produce oxygen and absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while improving tree cover in the area. He emphasized the need to plant more trees in Karachi, particularly local species.

“WWF-Pakistan, in collaboration with private companies, will plant more trees during 2015 in Karachi,” he added.

While, Saba Hassan, Head of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), Burger King remarked that extreme weather patterns in Pakistan, such as heat waves, rise in temperature, frequent cyclones, uncertain rainfalls, super floods and severe droughts are caused by climate change.

These extreme events have brought about drastic changes in the socio-economic and environmental conditions of the country. This situation is quite visible in the recent floods across Pakistan, the heat wave in Sindh (particularly Karachi) and the drought situation in Tharparkar district last year.

“We believe extreme weather events like the heat wave can only be mitigated with the help of such plantation activities across the country,” she said.

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