In photos: once barren and scorched, KP's hills now covered in 'green gold'


A winding road on a tree plantation in Buner is shown May 18. [Farooq Naeem/AFP]

A motorist rides past a forested area of Buner in the Swat Valley May 18. [Farooq Naeem/AFP]

KP forest department officers gather at a point overlooking the forest in the Swat Valley May 18. [Farooq Naeem/AFP]

Children play cricket in a tree plantation in Heroshah District May 17. [Farooq Naeem/AFP]

KP forest department guards walk through a tree plantation in Heroshah District May 17. [Farooq Naeem/AFP]

KP forest department guards walk in a tree plantation in Heroshah District on May 17. [Farooq Naeem/AFP]

KP forest department guards gather at a tree plantation in Buner May 18. [Farooq Naeem/AFP]

Houses are pictured in a forested area of the Swat Valley, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, May 18. [Farooq Naeem/AFP]

Trees planted on the outskirts of Peshawar are shown in this July 2017 aerial view. [Billion Tree Tsunami Afforestation Project]

HEROSHAH -- The change is drastic: around the Heroshah region in Malakand District, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), previously arid hills are now covered with forest as far as the horizon.

In 2015 and 2016 some 16,000 labourers planted more than 900,000 fast-growing eucalyptus trees at regular, geometric intervals in Heroshah. The titanic task is just a fraction of the effort across KP.

"Before it was completely burnt land. Now they have green gold in their hands," said forest manager Pervaiz Manan as he displayed pictures of the site previously, when only sparse blades of tall grass interrupted the monotonous landscape.

The new trees will reinvigorate the area's scenic beauty, reduce erosion, help mitigate climate change, decrease the chances of floods and increase chances of precipitation, said Manan, who oversaw the revegetation of Heroshah.


Pervaiz Manan, head of the KP forest department, is photographed May 17 in a tree plantation in the Heroshah region. [Farooq Naeem/AFP]

Residents also see them as an economic boost -- which officials hope will deter them from cutting them down for firewood in a region where electricity can be sparse.

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6 Comment(s)

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May Allah give u more courage to serve the humanity


These trees consume 100 liters of water per day and reduces underground water table it’s a request to plant some other tree that will prove good. Thanks


May Allah bless this noble work it’s a great and profitable change that is healthy too. Planting tree is proven through sunnah (peace be upon him) it’s a reward and an ongoing charity that benefits creations of Allah. A very good and positive initiative from KPK government for which we appreciate with open heart.


It's an amazing time for all of us to join hands and fully cooperate with the government for the initiative in doing this noble task. May Allah confers us to make our country clean and green


Well done


If we want to see easy and healthy life for our future generations, this project needs to be started throughout Pakistan on immediate basis.