HARARE – Diversified energy group, Zuva Petroleum is investing in excess of $200 000 on a tree planting initiative that will see one million new trees being planted by 2020.
The initiative will see the energy group partnering schools and farming community in a series of tree planting competitions, a move management says is aimed at inculcating a ‘green consciousness’ in the young minds.
In this respect Zuva Petroleum will work with selected 10 boarding schools as a launch-pad for its National Tree Planting Programme.
The Initiative will also see the introduction of an essay competition on environment protection.
Said Zuva Petroleum chief executive officer Mr Bethwell Gumbo:
“Sustainability is a critical element in the future of the brand’s business operations, recognizing that people, the planet and profit collectively form the foundation of Zuva’s long term growth and success drivers.
“It is against this background that the brand continues to invest resources directed towards sustenance and restoration of our environment.”
With regards to the schools competition, there will be a call to action for selected 20 boarding schools around Zimbabwe to enter the 2018 Zuva Schools Tree Growing Competition.
20 schools with capacity will be invited from the 10 provinces.
These will eventually be whittled down to 10 schools.
Independent assessors will visit the 10 schools and carry out the adjudication process. According to Zuva, the adjudicators will comprise of representatives from the forestry commission, the Ministry of Education, Zuva Petroleum, Columbus Communications Africa Group, and the media representative.
Sustainability experts say trees contribute to their environment by providing oxygen, improving air quality, climate amelioration, conserving water, preserving soil, and supporting wildlife.
They are also an effective sound barrier and can limit noise pollution, and recent research shows that trees also help reduce the stress of modern life.
The tree planting initiative is part of Zuva Petroleum’s broader corporate social responsibility (CSR) programme running under the banner ‘Zuva Cares’. Under Zuva Cares a number of CSR initiatives has been spearheaded including construction of ablutions facilities, and adoption of some parts of the Harare city for maintenance.
“Over the past decade, there has been increasing concerns from the public that many businesses have little concern for the consumer, care nothing about the deteriorating social order, and are indifferent to the problems of the environment.
“This concern is particularly relevant in the challenging times that we live in now. Public trust and confidence in business and the markets have been seriously eroded. The overriding priority at this stage is to restore confidence and trust in the markets we serve by shifting the focus from short-term profit considerations to long-term sustainable value creation, built around corporate responsibility and ethics,” said Mr Gumbo.
“Some may feel that in times of crisis, business cannot afford to invest in CSR. However, I believe that the truth is just the opposite. We must ensure that the financial challenges does not dampen the commitments of businesses to the environment and ethical behaviour.”