Ghana (University of Ghana) UG Hosts 2023 Edition of Green Ghana Day

The University of Ghana recently hosted a commemorative event marking the 2023 edition of Green Ghana Day.

The Green Ghana Day, instituted by the President, His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, in 2021, has become an annual event that signifies the country’s commitment to restoring its forest cover and combatting the adverse effects of climate change.

With a target of planting one million trees, the 2023 Green Ghana Day was on the theme “Our Forest, Our Health.”

In his keynote address, His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo reiterated the importance of Green Ghana Day as a symbol of hope for climate action. He highlighted the pressing global environmental challenges the world currently faces, acknowledging that climate change not only impacts health and livelihoods but also poses significant obstacles to sustainable development. The President stressed that the fate of the planet and its people depend on the actions taken today.

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo 

President Akufo-Addo reaffirmed Ghana’s commitment to implementing policies aimed at mitigating climate change’s effects. While recognising that Ghana’s individual contribution to global emissions may be relatively small, he emphasised the need for collective and ambitious efforts from all nations to combat the crisis.

The President commended the success achieved in the first two years of the Green Ghana project and announced a revision of this year’s target to focus on nurturing the over 23 million trees that have survived.

The event was attended by students from various second-cycle schools in Accra

He also highlighted Ghana’s participation in the Forest and Climate Leaders Partnership, which aims to reduce forest loss and land degradation while supporting sustainable development.

While expressing pride in Ghana’s history of leading climate action, the President called for collective, transformative, and sustainable contributions to climate solutions. He encouraged students to participate in the one-student, one-tree initiative to instill a culture of tree planting among the youth.

President Akufo-Addo reaffirmed the government’s commitment to protecting the environment and urged all Ghanaians to join the national tree-planting exercise.

In her remarks, the Vice-Chancellor of the University, Prof. Nana Aba Appiah Amfo, expressed gratitude to the Organising Committee and the Forestry Commission for the opportunity to host the commemorative event.

Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Nana Aba Appiah Amfo

She highlighted the University’s dedication to nurturing future leaders and conducting research for Ghana and the world’s benefit. Prof. Amfo emphasised the alarming rate at which Ghana is losing its forest vegetation, contributing to global warming, climate change, and the deterioration of the nation’s quality of life, agricultural production and livelihoods.

She stressed that aggressive afforestation and reforestation efforts will help mitigate climate change and position Ghana as a meaningful contributor to global reforestation initiatives and ecosystem damage repair.

Prof. Amfo underscored the importance of raising awareness to discourage environmentally destructive behaviors and ensure the preservation of Ghana’s terrestrial habitats. She commended President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo for spearheading the Green Ghana Day initiative and recognised the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources and the Forestry Commission for their roles in hosting the national event and supporting the initiative.

The Honorable Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel A. Jinapor, for his part highlighted the importance of trees for survival and socio-economic development. He announced several interventions by the Ministry to address deforestation and forest degradation, including the Ghana Forest Plantation Strategy, the Forest Investment Programme, and the Cocoa and Forests Initiative.

Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel A. Jinapor

During the ceremony, Hon. Henry Quartey, Greater Accra Regional Minister, expressed appreciation to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo for his dedicated efforts in preserving and protecting the region’s environment and natural resources.

Greater Accra Regional Minister, Henry Quartey

He acknowledged the significant progress achieved under the President’s leadership and highlighted ongoing projects and continuous improvements witnessed in Greater Accra. Hon. Quartey also extended appreciation to the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ghana for hosting this year’s tree-planting event.

Pupils from some Basic Schools in Accra with seedlings

The President, VC, and other dignitaries planted trees in the main UG field to commemorate the nationwide tree-planting exercise and demonstrate commitment to the Green Ghana project.

Ministers of State, MPs, other government officials, Senior UG Management members, members of the University community, and school children were in attendance.