Recently, the Indian State of Madhya Pradesh was home to an extraordinary event. This past Sunday millions of people gathered together to plant over 67 million trees in the span of 12 hours, which set a new Guinness World Record for reforestation.
More than 1.5 million people from all over the country planted trees on Sunday. The participants came from all walks of life: students, housewives, constructions workers, and government officials. A whopping total of 66,750,000 saplings were planted in only 12 hours throughout 24 districts of the Narmada river basin. The saplings were sourced from nurseries all around the central Indiana state of Madhya Pradesh, and the saplings were comprised of two dozen plant varieties.
This new green stunt easily tops the previous record, which was held by another state in India, Uttar Pradesh, for planting almost 50 million trees in 24 hours back in July of last year.
Madhya Pradesh’s Chief Minister, Shivraj Singh Chouhan reflected on the achievement:
“I am greatly indebted to all who are planting trees today. We will be contributing significantly in saving nature. By participating in a plantation, people are contributing their bit to climate change initiatives and saving the environment.The world talks of global warming & climate change, but Madhya Pradesh has taken a concrete step to deal with it.”
The mass-planting stunt will help raise awareness of environmental issues in India, along with the government’s plans to restore greenery to desolate areas of the country. At the recent Paris Climate Change Conference, India committed to a reforestation goal. They will be increasing their forest coverage up to 95 million hectares (235 million acres), by the year 2030, and are allocating 6.2 billion dollars in funds for the ambitious project.
Other Indian states are making plans for similar reforestation initiatives. The state of Kerala had planted more than 10 million trees in a single day this past June, and Maharashtra is aiming to plant 40 million trees this year as part of their own campaign.