How do you make the Billion Tree project a reality?
The project is a huge undertaking with many challenges.
Touhou, the Japanese video game character created by Shigeru Miyamoto, was designed with the Billion tree project in mind.
According to The Hindu, the billion-tree project has raised more than ₹1,200 crore from investors in the past year alone, and a large chunk of that is in the form of tax concessions for local farmers.
“This is the largest land acquisition in the history of China and has already helped to raise the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by about ₩2 trillion over the last 15 years,” said a finance ministry official in a recent interview.
The official added that the land will be divided among various companies.
However, some farmers are not so optimistic.
“[We have] no money, no equipment, no infrastructure, and we are losing our crops.
How do I build a billion trees?” said Zhao, who has a crop of 1,000 trees.
A couple of years ago, the government announced that the area of land under the Billion trees would be split into 20-30 smaller areas, which farmers have been complaining about.
They are now seeking to have the land divided in smaller chunks, as the project was originally supposed to be a 50-50 split.
When contacted, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Finance and Development said: “The land will remain as is, but it will be allocated according to a plan of 50-60% to farmers.”
The land would also be distributed to local governments to build roads and infrastructure.
But even though the government is in favour of the project, some have expressed concerns.
Mumbai-based economist Vinod Singh, who was involved in the Million Trees project, told The Hindu: “I do not know what the land is going to be used for.
The land was supposed to go to a bank for financing and the bank is still paying for it.””
If the government were to allow the land to go into private hands, it would lead to huge problems for farmers.
The bank is supposed to make loans, so if the government was to give the land back to the banks, the banks would take the money and run.”
However Mr Singh is optimistic about the Billion Trees project.
“We are hopeful.
We have a plan to build a million trees and the government will help us,” he said.
While the government has promised to get the money for the Billion-tree scheme, some are still questioning its merits.
For instance, a farmer in the north-eastern city of Chongqing, who did not want to be identified, said: “[The Billion-trees] are too expensive and have not been allocated for many years.”
According the official, the Million Tree project was only supposed to fund construction of a few mega-cities, like Changsha and Wuhan.
What are your thoughts on the Billion Terrace?
Are you optimistic or apprehensive about the Million trees?
Let us know in the comments section below.