The Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) in partnership with the Limpopo Department of Agriculture and Rural Development and Total South Africa launched National Arbor Week under the theme “Forests and Water”, adopted from the United Nations Forum of Forests (UNFF) theme for the International Day of Forests celebrated in March.
The launch took place on Thursday 1 September 2016 at Nkowankowa Stadium in the Greater Tzaneen Municipality. This was an opportunity for the departments and Total South Africa to showcase an Agroforestry Project, the NTL Baraka Eco-Farming and Tourism Project that the Limpopo provincial department supports in the Letsitele area, located about 54KM from Tzaneen.Arbor week is celebrated annually from 1-7 September and the launch day is combined with the The Arbor City Awards Ceremony. The Arbor City Awards competition also takes place to encourage municipalities to plant trees and green their areas of jurisdiction. This year, 26 municipalities entered the competition. The DAFF and TOTAL South Africa awarded four prizes under the following categories;
Metropolitan municipality award went to Cape Town in the Western Cape.
Category B municipality award went to two municipalities. Alfred Duma local municipality in KZN and Steve Tshwete local municipality in Mpumalanga.
Rural municipality with potential award went to Endumeni local municipality in KZN.
“Our main aim as Total South Africa in supporting this initiative is to encourage communities to participate in various greening activities within their own surroundings and widen the education around trees and the important role they play in our environment,” said Nyameka Makonya, Sustainable Development Manager, Total South Africa.