USP re­plants trees da­m­aged by cy­clone

Fiji Sun - - Nation -

The Univer­sity of the South Pa­cific is work­ing closely with the Depart­ment of Forestry in a bid to re­plant trees that were da­m­aged dur­ing Trop­i­cal Cy­clone Win­ston. The Oc­cu­pa­tional and En­vi­ron­men­tal Health and Safety unit at USP has iden­ti­fied ar­eas around the Statham and up­per Lau­cala cam­pus, and are work­ing to re­plant trees that will be able to with­stand fu­ture dev­as­tat­ing cy­clones. USP En­vi­ron­ment, Health and Safety of­fi­cer, Rahul Dutt said that his team was work­ing to pre­serve a very im­por­tant iden­tity of the Lau­cala Cam­pus, which was the flora around cam­pus. “Al­though we have a very di­verse flora on cam­pus, the re­plant­ing en­sures the con­tin­u­ance of na­tive and en­demic tree species and other species that are di­rectly and in­di­rectly de­pen­dent on them,” Mr Dutt said. The in­dige­nous plants that are se­lected for plant­ing are locally known by the fol­low­ing names, Dilo, Tavola, Masir­atu, Fiji Sago Palm, Kau­vula, Yaka, Qumu, Da­manu, Koka, Drala, Amunu, Waci­waci, Kuasi, Bua ni Viti, Vu­tuwai, Vo­lau, Bau­muri, Vesi. “Th­ese trees are large and strong rooted trees are na­tive or en­demic species, pro­vide shade and are of cul­tural value to the Pa­cific Is­land coun­tries,” Mr Dutt said. Thir­teen trees have been planted by the univer­sity gardeners, so far and fur­ther re­plant­ing will recom­mence in two months when the rest of the seedlings are ready for plant­ing.

Mr Dutt said that, where pos­si­ble, USP was try­ing to com­ple­ment the plant­ing of trees listed in the Depart­ment of Forestry’s 25 pri­or­ity species list.

Forestry of­fi­cer at the Depart­ment of Forestry, Maika Daveta said that tree plant­ing ex­er­cise was one of the many ac­tiv­i­ties that the depart­ment had en­gaged in as part of its re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion pro­gramme af­ter Trop­i­cal Cy­clone Win­ston. “We con­tinue to ad­vo­cate sus­tain­able forestry man­age­ment and re­plant­ing of trees as a way for­ward to solv­ing is­sues such as cli­mate change, tim­ber pro­duc­tion, food se­cu­rity, im­prov­ing water qual­ity, al­le­vi­at­ing poverty and loss of bio­di­ver­sity,” Mr Daveta said.

The seedlings for the tree re­plant­ing were sup­plied by the Fiji Depart­ment of Forestry. Source: Univer­sity of the South Pa­cific

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Fiji

© PressReader. All rights reserved.