Different states in India seem to be battling for the Guinness World Record of reforestation, and their efforts are massive! Back in 2016, the state of Uttar Pradesh’s had set the record when almost 1 million participants planted 50 million trees in 24 hours. Then, a year later the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh set a new Guinness World Record when 1.5 million volunteers planted more than 66 million tree saplings in just 12 hours along the Narmada river.
The chief minister of Madhya Pradesh, Shivraj Singh Chouhan, said:
“We realized banks of Narmada would not be able to accommodate so many trees so we decided to plant on catchment area. The world talks of global warming & climate change, but Madhya Pradesh has taken a concrete step to deal with it.”
In a press release, Chouhan boasted the achievement:
“I am extremely proud to happily share that people of Madhya Pradesh successfully planted 6.63 Crore (One crore is 10 million) saplings today.”
This all began after the Paris climate conference. India had pledged to increase forest cover to 95 million hectares (235 million acres) by year 2030. The nation calls it the “make India green again” plan. The country is putting $6.2 billion towards the effort. The aim of the mass-planting event was to raise awareness for this plan. So far, they’ve obviously kept true to their word.
After the latest record-breaking event, Chouhan also told India.com:
“I am greatly indebted to all who are planting trees today. We will be contributing significantly in saving nature. By participating in a plantation, people are contributing their bit to climate change initiatives and saving the environment.”
Even though these two states are leading the efforts for the country, other states in India are similarly taking initiatives to create public awareness towards reforestation. Just recently, Kerala had planted more than 10 million trees in 24 hours; and Maharashtra is planning an event to plant 40 million trees as part of a reforestation campaign.
The leaders of these states are overwhelmed to witness the enthusiasm of volunteers planting trees. Their hope is that by planting more trees they can help reverse the damaging effects of climate change. The goal regionally is to improve air quality in India by having the trees absorb greenhouse gasses from the air around them. Air pollution is a major concern throughout the country. From the list of top 10 most polluted cities in the world, 6 of them are in India!
To monitor all the new trees they have planted, they use aerial photography to identify which trees are doing the best, and which areas require assistance. Furthermore, every mass planting plan has included upkeep – to ensure that all of the trees receive the proper water and maintenance.
India is surely on a roll with impressive accomplishments! They are proving to the world that when we work together, it is possible to achieve so much more than we could ever imagine. But even though “teamwork makes the dream work”, each person individually can accomplish a lot too!
For example, there’s Ken Chaplin, a Canadian who planted 15,170 red pine seedlings in one day. He currently holds the Guinness World Record for the most trees planted in a day by a single individual. And according to Ken, about 90% of these trees have survived to this day.
The reality is, while all of these efforts are helping tremendously, it is not enough. While millions of trees are being planted, there are still billions of trees getting cut down every year. So it is crucial that everyone participates in this mission to green up our planet. Imagine if everyone on Earth just planted one tree…that would be 7.7 billion trees!
How great would that be if everyone planted one tree, all on the same day…there would be no beating that Guinness World Record! Unless, of course, we all did it again and planted more than one tree each. But we don’t have to wait for an event to plant our tree…get out there and plant yours today!