Keystone Bank Limited has restated its commitment to environmental sustainability as it recently partnered with the Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF) to plant 100 fruit trees.
A statement by the bank said the exercise which was in commemoration of the 2021 International Day of Forests (IDF) with the theme “Forest and Biodiversity”, witnessed employees of the financial institution plant seedlings of jack fruit, tenera oil palm, cashew and mango donated by NCF in their homes. The lender further noted that the exercise aligned in achieving the goals of preserving and restoring the environment for the benefit of the people.
“It equally supports NCF’s Green Recovery initiative, a 30-year programme aimed at increasing Nigeria’s forest cover to at least 25% over the next 30 years. The initiative is coming at a time when Nigeria is recording one of the highest rates of forest loss globally,” the bank said.
The International Day of Forests was established on the 21st day of March 2012, by resolution of the United Nations General Assembly to celebrate and raise awareness of the importance of all types of forests, and trees outside forests, for the benefit of current and future generations.
In his remarks, the director-general, Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF), Dr. Muhtari Aminu-Kano while thanking Keystone Bank for the gesture, said Nigeria had lost over 90% of its forest cover to degradation, unsustainable development, and over-exploitation of the forest.
“Thus, such collaborative effort on a larger scale could be crucial towards reversing the trend of deforestation in Nigeria.
“We depend on forests for our survival as trees provide the air we breathe. Forests also offer ecosystem services, enhance global food security and mitigate effect of climate change,” Dr. Aminu-Kano noted.
On his part, the managing director/CEO of Keystone Bank, Mr. Olaniran Olayinka called on individuals, corporate organisations and civil society actors to reflect on the state of Nigeria’s forests and the implication of losing such valuable heritage.
“Everyone should consider what can be done individually and collectively to protect, restore and sustainably manage the country’s remaining forests for present and future generations.
“As a bank, we cannot overemphasize the need to foster a sustainable environment to ensure business and life continuity through tree planting, carbon footprint reduction, recycling amongst other sustainable practices.
“We will continue to collaborate and initiate exercises like this that align with our sustainable living culture as a bank,” the bank’s chief concluded.
Keystone Bank is a technology and service-driven commercial bank offering convenient and reliable solutions to its customers.