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Mongolia Commits to Plant a Billion Trees by 2030

Mongolia Launches Ambitious Reforestation Campaign Amid Climate Change Challenges

A National Effort to Combat Desertification and Climate Change

In response to the rapidly escalating problem of desertification and the threat of climate change, Mongolia has embarked on a significant environmental project. By 2030, the nation aims to plant one billion trees, committing at least one percent of its GDP annually to climate change mitigation and reforestation efforts.

This initiative is part of Mongolia’s broader strategy to reduce the global impact of climate change and contribute to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. Presidential Decree Kickstarts National Greening Effort

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“Today marks the start of our national campaign to plant one billion trees,” announced Yangug Sodbaatar, Chief of Staff to the President of Mongolia, in a recent declaration in Ulaanbaatar. President Ukhnaagiin Khürelsükh officially launched the initiative with a decree mandating the government’s annual financial commitment to fighting climate change and desertification, as reported by Xinhua News Agency.

Mongolia’s Forest Coverage and the Plan Ahead

Mongolia, with a land area of 1.6 million square kilometers, has only 7.9% of its territory forested, while about 77% is affected by desertification and land degradation, according to the Ministry of Environment and Tourism. Since 2010, the country has designated the second Saturday of May and October as national tree-planting days.

“We have formed task groups to implement this national billion-tree campaign over the next ten years,” said N. Urtnasan, Minister of Nature, Environment, and Tourism. “To date, 76.9% of Mongolia’s territory is impacted by desertification. Achieving the campaign’s goals could reduce highly desertified land by 4%, increase forest coverage by 9%, and cut greenhouse gas emissions by 600,000 tons,” reported AKIpress.

Urtnasan added that partnerships between public and private sectors would focus on reforestation, forest management, and advancing tree care programs. Several large private companies have already pledged to plant between 20 to 120 million trees over the decade.

Government’s Three-Phase Plan for the Campaign

As announced on Monday, the Mongolian Government has outlined a three-phase plan for the campaign, with the preparatory phase from 2021–2024, the intensification phase planned for 2024–2026, and the sustainable implementation phase set for 2027–2030.

Religious Landscape of Mongolia

According to Mongolia’s 2020 population census, 52% of the population identifies as Buddhist, closely associated with the Gelug and Kagyu schools of Tibetan Buddhism. 40% of the population declare no religious affiliation, while Islam (3.2%), Mongolian shamanism (2.5%), and Christianity (1.3%) make up the majority of the remainder.


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