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Trees for Water, Harda, Madhya Pradesh, India

In association with The Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation

The river Narmada, also known as the lifeline of the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, is a source of water for the state as well as is home to diverse flora and fauna that thrives on the banks of the river. The project aims to fortify the Narmada river ecosystem and is spread across the banks of the tributaries--Ajnal, Sukhni and Bakud of the river. A total of 50, 000 trees will be planted with the participation of the communities that inhabit the villages around the project site.

Research has shown that trees play an important role in maintaining healthy riparian ecosystems. The trees planted along the banks of rivers and streams help regulate the temperature of the water during summer months thereby ensuring the well-being and survival of the aquatic flora and fauna. Tree canopies that line river banks reduce runoff caused due to rain, trap sediment and prevent soil erosion which decreases the occurrence of floods. The trees also act as a natural filtration system that intercepts pollutants that are most likely carried into rivers due to runoff from rainwater.

Studies have found that the leaves from trees that accumulate on river banks are a source of nutrition for insects which in turn are consumed by rivers birds, fish and bats.

The plantation activity for this project will generate an income for the rural communities in the short term. The tree species planted here are teak and bamboo, both of which have a high capacity for carbon sequestration. On maturity, these trees will help offset 1 million kgs of carbon dioxide annually from the atmosphere.



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