Islamabad: The Capital Development Authority is taking concrete measures in collaboration with the partner organizations to increase the green cover and to preserve the rich biodiversity inhabited in the Margalla Hills National Park (MHNP). The targets for planting the saplings has been increased from 0.8 million to 01 million a year.
This was stated by the chairman CDA Imtiaz Inayat Elahi while taking to media men here today during a ceremony in connection with the World Environment Day 2011 being celebrated across the globe on Sunday June 05. Theme of the World Environment Day this year is Forest: Nature at your service.
Imtiaz Inayat Elahi said that CDA as a part of National Tree Plantation Drive has planted 500,000 saplings during the Spring Tree Plantation Campaign – 2011. These has been planted in continuation of “Clean and Green – Islamabad” Campaign launched in Monsoon – 2008 and 2.4 million trees were to be planted in three years under this campaign.
The Chairman CDA said that Islamabad is the only planned city of Pakistan and its green character distinguishes it from other cities of the country as well as on the globe. He said, “Today’s Green Islamabad is the outcome of laborious and consistent efforts of CDA employees, which they made during the last 50 years in planting, protecting and nourishing the trees in the capital”. He said that more than 50 per cent plants out of total sapling have grown due to strict monitoring and further measures would be taken to improve survival rate of the saplings.
The Chairman CDA, Imtiaz Inayat Elahi, said, CDA is working hard to increase the green cover and preserve the green character of the Federal Capital. CDA is focusing on planting the indigenous species, especially fruit and flowering trees including Chir, Pine, Kachnar, Amaltas, Dhreak, Jacaranda, Olive and Jaman etc. He said that strict monitoring of the planted saplings is being carried out to ensure their maximum survival. The Chairman said that CDA actively participates in National Tree Plantation drive during each planting season and also invites general public, educational institutions, NGOs, government employees traders, environmentalists and members of the sectors citizens committees, representatives of ICT administration, Islamabad Police, to make these campaigns a success.
The Chairman said that the national park makes the city unique as the national park is abundant with of 616 plant species, 250 of birds, 38 of mammals and 13 species of reptiles. Collective efforts would help preserve the rich fauna and flora of the area as there are very few capital cities in the world that are blessed with such close proximity to nature as Islamabad.
CDA is taking concrete measures not only to protect the species inhabited the area but providing educational and recreational facilities to the residents of the twin cities and those visiting the federal capital. The Capital Development Authority developed a mini zoo named, Marghazar Zoo in 1978 on 25 acres of land as a temporary facility at the foothills of Daman-e-Koh in the protected Margalla Hills National Park. There are 66 species of wildlife, 18 mammals, 45 birds, and 3 reptiles. The total numbers of animals and birds are 600 that include 92 mammals, 508 birds and 16 reptiles. Awareness raising programme for educating the youth has been initiated in addition to introducing wildlife in public parks like Daman-e-Koh and Rawal Lake View Park.
The Chairman CDA said that agreements with public private partnership have been linked to preserve the bio-diversity and natural beauty of Margallah Hills National Park and wildlife would be provided natural environment. He said that Rain Water Harvesting Programme has been launched to improve the underground water table and CDA is the first municipality to launch this programme.
He said that in addition to planting more saplings, a programme for conservation of banyan trees has also been initiated.
For more information, contact:
Public Relations Directorate
Capital Development Authority (CDA)
Main Office, G-7/4, Islamabad
Tel: +9251 925 2614