BDO in East Africa, a public accounting, tax, and advisory firm, planted 5,000 trees in the Aberdare Forest Reserve as part of its commitment to support the goal of net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.
BDO East Africa has partnered with the East African Wildlife Society (EAWLS) to plant 5,000 indigenous trees in the reserve, which is part of the Aberdare ecosystem, one of Kenya’s critical water catchment areas and a key water tower.
The programme will see BDO in East Africa invest €9,200 (Ksh1.1 million) which is expected to play a key role in offsetting carbon emissions while giving back to the local community through direct and indirect employment.
“The Aberdare reforestation project will play a vital role in restoring the biodiversity of the forest reserve and provide jobs to people from the surrounding communities. It is anticipated that once planted and matured, the 5,000 red cedar trees will sequester approximately 240,000 pounds (109 metric tons) of carbon dioxide per year,” said BDO East Africa CEO Sandeep Khapre.
The programme expects to create around 50 direct and 100 indirect jobs for the local community. The community will additionally benefit from clean water as a result of the restoration, reduced human conflict incidents, access to wood and non-wood products from the forest and reduced vulnerability to climate change impacts.
The EAWLS will implement the programme in partnership with local community forest associations (CFAs) and the Kenya Forestry Service (KFS). KFS will guarantee the long-term protection of the rehabilitated site. The EAWLS will also pay the CFAs engaged in accordance with the prescribed standards and purchase tree seedlings from their nurseries. This is aimed at supporting the local communities’ livelihoods in accordance with the expectations of the project.
The KFS will take control of the site after three hours to ensure there is enhanced protection against logging.
Mr. Khapre added that there will be regular monitoring and reporting on the project by BDO’s local and global offices.
Globally BDO has made other commitments towards supporting the goal of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 include limiting travel to essential meetings and events while monitoring and addressing the organisation’s impact.