NEWS

Environment Minister Urges Use Of Vetiver Grass To Stop Soil Erosion

He said Government intended to co-ordinate 50km of vetiver grass planting every year, with NGOs be­ing invited to commit funding for 50km, with the invitation extend­ing to the private sector to provide support for an additional 50 km of vetiver grass.
21 Mar 2019 14:37
Environment Minister Urges Use Of Vetiver Grass To Stop Soil Erosion
Minister for Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development, Waterways and Environment Mahendra Reddy planting vetiver grass with the Naveicovatu Village headman on March 14, 2019. Photo: DEPTFO News

Mahendra Reddy is urging Non-Governmental Or­ganisations (NGOs) and the Private Sector to work with Government and to promote veti­ver grass as a tool for riverbank stabilisation and erosion control purposes.

Minister for Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development, Water­ways and Environment said: “We need to work together to scale up such ecosystem-based approaches and use it as a vegetative candidate for bioengineering river stabilisation work.

I now wish to invite them to provide funding and to take own­ership of matching commitment with Government.”

He said Government intended to co-ordinate 50km of vetiver grass planting every year, with NGOs be­ing invited to commit funding for 50km, with the invitation extend­ing to the private sector to provide support for an additional 50 km of vetiver grass.

“We also urge them to adopt this unique community-based model whereby we pay them $12,200 per kilometre or $12.20 per metre of vetiver grass establishment.

In this way, we can achieve 150 km per year with full community ownership and we could achieve the dual objec­tive of protecting our river banks as well as contributing to a green envi­ronment while supporting the com­munity as well,” Mr Reddy added.

He highlighted that the stabilisa­tion of riverbanks was important, but despite current efforts, there was still a lot to be done for the ef­fective management of river banks.

Edited by Jonathan Bryce

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