ISLAMABAD: The Capital Development Authority (CDA) has developed 18 Miyawaki forests during the last two months in various areas of the capital city.

“We are exploring more options for similar new forests,” CDA Chairman Amer Ali Ahmed told Dawn on Sunday. He said these forests were being developed on the direction of Prime Minister Imran Khan.

In February this year, the prime minister had inaugurated the first Miyawaki forest in Islamabad’s Shakarparian area under the ten billion tsunami project.

In these forests, the CDA planted three indigenous saplings of cheer, Dodonaea Viscosa (Sanatha) and Bauhinia Variegata (Kachnar).

The Miyawaki Forest is a method of tree plantation which was introduced by Japanese botanist and expert in plant ecology, Akira Miyawaki.

In this method, trees are planted close to each other and during early period the plants compete with each other for space and access to light and water, a struggle which results in faster growth. The plants under this method grow 10 times faster than normal plantation.

Meanwhile, a press release issued by CDA said that forests had been planted in 18 places in the city so far, and will be established at 23 places in Islamabad.

The forests have been planted at Shakarparian, Blue Area, F-6, F-7, F-8, F-10, D-12, G-6, G-7, Fatima Jinnah Park and other places.

It said remaining forests will be set up at various sectors, including G-10, and I-9.

“CDA is also making arrangements for ensuring protection of these forests. Miyawaki forests grow with 10pc faster than the normal forests because trees are planted in a special arrangement in these forests. These forests will help in controlling the environmental pollution.”

A large number of trees have also been planted on greenbelts of various roads, mainly along Srinagar Highway. Earlier, the environment wing was part of the Metropolitan Corporation Islamabad (MCI) but the federal government placed it under CDA’s control in November last year.

Sources said after taking control of the wing, CDA has been focusing on the green character of the city and a fully-fledged forestry park spreading on 350 acre was also being developed where CDA’s staff is currently planting trees.

An officer of the environment wing claimed that due to massive tree plantation, Islamabad will present a new look by the end of this year.

Published in Dawn, April 12th, 2021

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