[one_third][/one_third]Over 20000 threatened trees planted at the Mount Cameroon National Park by the Environment and Rural Development Foundation are increasingly victimised by anthropogenic threats like bush fire, perennial weeds, and pastes that they may become extinct within the next two to three years if desperate sustainable management measures are not put in place.
Studies indicate that community sensitization and engagement in the monitoring and management of trees via constant clearing/removal of perennial weeds and mulching is indispensible to the survival of trees seedlings in rural and urban areas (Ferrini & Fini, 2010). The engagement of forest adjacent communities through these techniques is therefore preponderant for the sustainable management of these over 20,000 threatened trees in and around the Mount Cameroon National Park. The Environment and Rural Development Foundation (ERuDeF), has over five years experience of working to restore threatened trees within the degraded Mt Cameroon forest area as over 15 years experience in the conservation and sustainable management of biodiversity in the Western Highlands of Cameroon. Through this, they have harnessed a great amount of technical know-how and can effectively ensure the sustainable management of these trees.
With the empowerment of these adjacent communities with the adequate knowledge and skills required to monitor and manage the trees, at least 70% of the 20,000 threatened trees survive by the end of 2017. Also, encroachment into the National Park by forest adjacent communities will reduce 75%. This will go a long way to contribute towards the mitigation of the effects of climate change as the forest cover will be reinstated and will served as a carbon sink. Fresh and constant water supply also be available to adjacent communities in and out of season.
US$35,000 will however be needed within the next 3 years to realise this project. Of this amount, US$8,000 will aid training local institutions (on quarterly basis) for one year; US$12,000 for monitoring of threats on the species for the next 3 years; US$ 10,000 for general management of the species and US$5,000 for evaluation and production of maps to monitor the survival rates of the tree species.
ERuDeF’s has in collaboration with the Ministry of Forestry and Wildlife and forest adjacent communities, contributed towards reducing conservable human pressure on threatened tree species in this area. More on this can be gotten at www.erudef.org, and www.greenvision.news.
Urgent national and internal interventions are therefore very crucial in ensuring the survival of over 20,000 tree seedlings in and around the Mount Cameroon National Park. Without this, these trees will be destroyed and the huge amount of material, financial and human resources invested for over five years to raise these seedlings would have gone in vein.