Sri Lanka launched the ‘One Million Tree Stories’ Project today (20) at the Sports Ministry Auditorium in Colombo.
The ceremony was held under the patronage of Minister of Environment, Natural Resources and Sports Navin Dissanayake with the participation of Miss World Rolene Strauss and Rotary International Vice Chairperson Cruz De Giay.
Sri Lanka Tourism in partnership with Rotary Sri Lanka and Hatton National Bank is sponsoring this project, with the objective of planting one million trees in Sri Lanka within this year and to have a greener environment for future generations by inspiring, engaging and supporting people to take personal responsibility for the environment, making it safe, healthy and sustainable and to share the process as a model for the country. Research finds every human being is emotionally attached to a tree at some point in their lives. Hence the theme “One Million Tree Stories” was coined.
The Forest Department of the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources has revealed that “Sri Lanka’s forest coverage has reduced from 53% to 29% as at 2012”. Therefore, with the objective of ensuring the children of this country to have ‘Tourism Industry’ in Sri Lanka that could be proud of just like today, the stake holders decided to unite as an industry and to launch the project “One million Tree Stories” with Miss World – Rolene Strauss.
Addressing the gathering, the Minister of Environment and Natural Resources Navin Dissanayake said that tourists who visit Sri Lanka prior to their departure could pay US$1 (Rs.100/-) and contribute for the tree planting project.
All trees will be geotagged so that one can see the trees being planted and their growth over the years. – the cost of a sponsorship of a tree is US$ 1/ Rs. 100/ -. This includes the cost of the plant and general maintenance for two years.
Sri Lanka, with the end of the war in 2009 has now become one of the best tourist destinations in the world and several projects have been implemented to attract two million tourists by the end of this year, the Minister added. He noted with appreciation the ‘One Million Tree Stories’ Project which is a fine creation to protect the environment.
Miss World – Rolene Strauss, said she is happy to participate at the event and she will do her best to carry this concept to the world.
During the event ‘One Million Tree Stories’ Project Website (http://www.rotarytree.com/) was launched by the Minister NavinDissanayake and Miss World – Rolene Strauss.