Cuban News Agency
Havana, Aug 10 (acn) Cuba has planned to plant more than 135 millions trees in the last half of 2007 as a response to the United Nations-promoted international campaign entitled "Lets Plant the Planet," to encourage world reforestation.
National Forestry Director Elias Linares noted that Cuba is hoping to cover 12.6 percent of the world's overall goal through a countrywide campaign that will run until December, according to a report by Granma Internacional.
He explained that in the island, some 60,000 to 64,000 hectares are planted every year as part of the national program called "Plant your Tree."
The action has led to a steady growth of forested areas on the island, covering nearly 25 percent of the national territory, said Linares.
"Cuba, Uruguay, Chile and Costa Rica are among the only countries in Latin America and the Caribbean witnessing the growing of their forest," stated Linares.
The forestry specialist said that forest fires are the greatest threat to green areas in Cuba, especially during the drought season, spanning from January to May.
He spoke about a recent fire that burned for 47 days in the Cienaga de Zapata (Zapata Swamp) area, the largest wetland in the Caribbean.Some 6,000 hectares including grasslands, boggy lands and forests caught fire due to the drought. The damages caused by the fire are still being assessed.