MSP backs conservation efforts

An MSP has highlighted initiatives designed to promote tree planting at home and to protect tropical rain forests overseas.

Jamie Halcro Johnston has focused on efforts by conservation charity The Woodland Trust to make free trees available to schools and communities.

The aim is to encourage a diversity of wildlife.

It comes as the UK government is introducing legislation designed to clamp down on illegal deforestation and protect rain forests overseas.

The Highlands and Islands MSP said: “While these two initiatives could scarcely be more different, they share the common objective of focusing attention on the vital contribution made by trees and woodlands to a healthy environment.

“By encouraging people – especially children – to plant trees in their local areas, the Woodland Trust scheme is providing an imaginative way of helping communities to improve their own environment.

“The UK government initiative is designed to ensure that UK consumers are not unwittingly contributing to the loss of some of the world’s most important natural habitats, which act as the lungs of our planet.

“Together they show that we can all play our part in protecting and enhancing the environment at home and, through the government’s action, abroad.”

He added: “While trees are not the first thing we associate with the Northern Isles, in the past there would almost certainly have been greater forest cover and trees like birch, rowan and willow are considered to be native to the islands.

“I can remember being given a tree to plant when I was a pupil at Orphir Primary School and it still grows, albeit slightly lopsidedly, in our garden. I hope schools will get involved in this latest initiative.

“Tree planting, if carried out sensitively and in the right places, could be of benefit to our native wildlife and is a fantastic way of engaging local children with a very worthwhile environmental project.”


Add Your Comment
  • Alexander Kidd

    • August 28th, 2020 19:38

    Planting Wind Turbines in deep peat Bog has the opposite effect, where is his voice against the ecological disaster occurring in Shetland. Trees would be better but wind turbines make money for a few chosen ones. SIC sold their soles for a few coins, got themselves in bed with the developer, as regulator, perpetrator and land donor!


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