Two hundred new trees have been planted at Fiji National University’s (FNU), Lautoka Campus as part of an initiative to protect and care for the environment.

The seedlings were donated by Ministry of Forests as part of its “Plant 4 Million Trees in Four Years initiative” following a pledge taken by staff and students last year to join the fight against climate change.

The tree planting program was led by Head of Natabua Campus, Professor Unaisi Baba who was over-whelmed with the strong support from students and staff.

“This initiative is aimed at making our students understand that they are our future leaders and they must take into their hands the agendas that are reported in our society relating to climate change. This is only possible if we learn together and bring out solutions to our climate challenges,” said Professor Baba.

The senior academic said they will continue to promote such ‘Green initiatives’ to create greater awareness about caring for the environment.

Ministry of Forestry, Forest Officer, Akesa Ravia thanked the University of being part of the ‘plant 4 million trees initiative’ which aims to fight climate change by reducing the carbon footprint as well as re-storing native plants which according to the Ministry has been depleting over the years.

“Apart from persevering the native species the ministry is assisting in planting sandalwood, mahogany and lemon, which in future can generate income. The aim is also to make Fiji healthy and environmentally safe for our future generations,” said Ravia.

Lia Bogitini, an Assistant Lecturer, Department of Meteorology and Environmental Sciences under the School of Applied Sciences, College of Engineering, Science and Technology (CEST) have been in the forefront to make Natabua Campus more environmentally friendly.

“With Fiji leading COP23 last year, we felt that FNU as the country’s national university should be leading the way in terms of protecting and preserving our environment. The staff and students of Natabua Campus in 2018 pledged their support for the protection of environment. We had several projects last year and we are continuing the momentum this year,” said Bogitini.

Staff and students are also encouraged to wear Green on Wednesday’s to show their support for the care of the environment.

According to Bogitini the first environment activity for the year was a clean-up campaign at Natabua Campus.

“The first clean-up campaign was a massive success. Plans are underway to conduct a second round of clean-up at the Campus before we move to the Natabua area, Lautoka foreshore and Saweni beach,” she said.

A special award is up for grabs for staff and student who show great enthusiasm towards the Green initiative.

The Campus will mark World Environment Day on June 5.

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