Planting trees to offset carbon footprint

Rajiv (right), Rajesh (left) and Team Selangor volunteers planting the trees at the Section 6 RT centre in Petaling Jaya.

TO ADDRESS issues of climate change and encourage carbon absorption for 2021, the Bukit Gasing constituency has started a tree-planting initiative.

For a start, 46 plants, including trees, will be planted at the Section 6 Rukun Tetangga (RT) centre in Petaling Jaya.

Bukit Gasing assemblyman Rajiv Rishyakaran said for 2021, his office would focus extra attention on climate change.

“Climate change is happening rapidly across the globe, and the effects are starting to be seen in Malaysia.

“People are becoming more aware of how rain patterns are changing and how floods are happening (due to climate change).

“It is time we do something extra, and one of the most basic things is planting trees, ” he told reporters in Petaling Jaya.

He said it was important to cut down on carbon emissions in our daily lives.

“Electricity, for one, comes mostly from coal and gas power plants, and all of these processes release carbon into the atmosphere.

“Trees absorb carbon so planting them is a necessary and basic component we can perform, ” he added.

Rajiv said the 46 plants included pine trees, bamboo, kalanchoe and philodendron.

“The RT volunteers did research and found that these plants were the most carbon absorbent.

“I aim to work with all residents associations and RTs in my constituency over the next one year to keep planting more trees, ” he added.

He also encouraged residents to plant trees.

“We will soon launch a ‘Give One Tree to Each House’ programme to encourage more tree planting.

“When we drive cars where petrol or diesel is burnt, the amount of carbon emitted per car on average can be offset by planting about five to seven trees.

“As responsible humans, I urge everyone to do something to address climate change.

“This is the first step towards many more programmes that we will do, ” he said.

Helping the people to plant the trees is Team Selangor. Its programme officer Farhan Suzaki said it was a state government initiative to encourage volunteerism and community-based programmes.

At the Section 6 RT centre, there is also a community garden. Its chairman Rajesh Mansukhlal said Rajiv had been very supportive towards the centre by reaching out to residents and getting things going.

“I came in as chairman in 2009 and we revamped the space here because it was not functional then.

“This is on Federal Government land, under Public Works Department since the 1970s.

“Our 10,000 to 12,000sq ft plot has a community garden that started in 2010.

“We have a greenhouse and local fruit trees, ” said Rajesh.

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