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AROCHA and Partners reclaim degraded illegal mining lands

Pernod Ricard, a world producer of alcoholic beverages and AROCHA, a campaigner for forest conservation and biodiversity, have planted 400 trees out of over 2,500 targeted trees to reclaim degraded illegal mining lands in part of the Eastern region.

The more than 2,500 trees, expected to be planted five feet apart in the year, would occupy a 12-and-half acre land around the river Adensu at Segyimase, near Kyebi. The destructive lands, with several deep pits about 200 meters away from the Atewa forest, had been filled and levelled as part of efforts to commemorate this year’s ‘Responsib’All Day,’ an initiative by Pernod Ricard Ghana.

The Day is dedicated to ensuring sustainability and responsibility from their employees and this year’s commemoration is on the theme: “Helping to Protect and Restore Nature and Biodiversity.” The Pernod Ricard Ghana seek to help restore the deteriorated former illegal mining sites into normalcy by levelling and planting trees.

Restoring land

Four varieties of trees namely: Terminalia ivorensis, also known in local parlance as (Emire); Khaya avorensis (Mahogany); Mansonia digitata and Terminalia superba (Ofram) were planted on the lands that becomes the property of the community.

It is expected that the trees would help in restoring the land to its natural form and could be used for crop production 10 years after the trees had been planted. Madam Eunice Osei-Tutu, the Sustainability and Responsibility Manager, Penord Ricard Ghana for West Africa, in an interview with the Ghana News Agency, said, the reclamation and tree painting exercise at the illegal mining sites aligned with their sustainability roadmap.

“One of our 2030 sustainability roadmap is nurturing nature and the environment because all our products are from nature. It is either one grain, a fruit or water,” she said.

Mr Daryl Bosu, the Deputy National Director, AROCHA Ghana, told GNA the site had been reclaimed with the support of the chiefs and community members and they ensured the land was not destroyed again.

He said the Okyehene, Osagyefo Amoatia Ofori Panyin made a directive that all families who gave out their lands for illegal mining activities must fill the pits and level the lands or otherwise forfeit their ownership and so AROCHA Ghana and Pernod Ricard, would manage the land on behalf of the community. Pernod Ricard instituted the ‘Responsib’All Day’ on June 16, 2011. This year’s commemoration engaged all employees including their managers in the exercise.

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