He therefore rallied members of the community to join forces with the commission to protect the forest against such illegal activities.
“I will encourage everybody to seek permission from the Forestry Commission before undertaking any activity in the reserve,” he said.
Ghana’s forest degradation rate
With the nation's forest resources reduced from 8.2 million hectares in 1900 to 1.6 million hectares currently, the Greening Ghana project is aimed at halting deforestation.
In addition, the country is said to be losing about 65,000 hectares of forest cover annually to illegal chainsaw operations.
The Greening Ghana launch forms part of activities to mark this year’s Forestry Week, which is celebrated every year, in line with the International Forest Day which falls on March 21.
International Forest Day
International Forest Day is a day set aside by the United Nations to raise awareness of the importance of all types of forests and trees outside forests. The UN, however, allows member states to adapt the celebration of the International Day of Forests, as well as the date, to suit their peculiar circumstances.
The Forestry Commission of Ghana chose the month of May for the celebration of the day because of favourable climatic conditions during that time of the year for tree planting and other silvicultural operations.
The theme for the week-long celebration was “Healthy Forests Mitigate Climate Change”.
Other programmes that heralded the Greening Day included an inter-school quiz, the launch of one man, one tree campaign and a colloquium on forests investment opportunities and climate change.
Mr Dartey commended the chiefs and people of Dodowa for preserving the ancient Dodowa Forest.