Assistant Information Officer
Department of Information & Public Relations
Ministry of Natural Resources, Labour and Immigration
National Parks Trust
Minister for Natural Resources, Labour and Immigration, Honourable Vincent Wheatley has said that the Government of the Virgin Islands is doing its part to cultivate a culture of a greener BVI for all as the Territory prepares to observe Arbour Day on November 29.
Honourable Wheatley said, “We however are calling on you to make your contributions towards that green future we all aspire to. You can start today, by planting a tree which provides so many environmental benefits such as moderating climate, improving air quality, reducing floods, and providing home and shelter for wildlife.”
Meanwhile Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Natural Resources, Labour and Immigration, Dr. Marcia Potter commended the National Parks Trust for ensuring that the importance of Arbour Day is highlighted every year.
Dr. Potter said, “We are reminded of the importance of planting trees to ensure a future filled with hope for this Territory and the planet.”
Director of the National Parks Trust of the Virgin Islands, Dr. Cassander Titley-O'Neal, is inviting the BVI community to participate in the Arbour Day ceremony to be held at the Pelican Gate School, West End. Trees to be planted at the ceremony include White Cedar, Golden Apple, and Passion Fruit trees.
Dr. Titley-O'Neal said, “Trees offer us humans many benefits including but not limited to, the oxygen that we breathe, storing of carbon so as to minimise the impacts of climate change, and stabilisation of the soil so as to protect against sediment run-off, soil erosion, and flooding in low-lying areas.”
She added, “Arbour Day is one of those yearly initiatives of the Trust that reminds us all of just how important trees are to us and the environment around us."
Arbour Day was instituted in the British Virgin Islands in the year 1953, following a suggestion by the first Chairman of the National Parks Trust, Mr. J.R. O’Neal after he was delegated to provide trees to be planted on the occasion of the Queen’s Coronation.
This year’s Arbour Day theme is, ‘BVI: Ever Strong, Ever Resilient, Ever Green.'