Govt, Coca-Cola sign solar irrigation system MoU

Govt, Coca-Cola sign solar irrigation system MoU

To provide a solar irrigation system for the Kingdom’s first regional nursery in Tboung Khmum province, the Ministry of Environment has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Coca-Cola Cambodia that will provide a system that can irrigate over a million seedlings annually, aiming to meet public demand for trees and promote green spaces.

Located in the province’s Village 44 in Preah Theat commune, O’Reang Ov district, this regional nursery is the first of its kind in the country.

The facility’s creation is part of the government’s Circular Strategy on Environment (2023–2028), which aims to protect, preserve, and conserve Cambodia’s natural resources to achieve carbon-neutral status with 60% forest coverage by 2050.

The MoU signing on “the Provision of a Solar Irritation System to Cambodia’s First Regional Nursery” took place at the Ministry office in Phnom Penh, witnessed by Minister of Environment Eang Sophalleth and Cambodia Beverage Company (Coca-Cola Cambodia) CEO Joseph Ho.

In his remarks, Sophalleth emphasised the importance of solar irrigation systems in the country.

“We are grateful to Coca-Cola Cambodia for their donation of the solar irrigation system which will play a significant part in contributing to the implementation of the circular strategy and bringing our ambitions for a carbon neutral economy a step closer,” he said.

Sophalleth said the government has instructed the Ministry to organise an exhibition to promote and distribute saplings under the theme “Green Sprout” from July 10, in front of the Ministry office for the display and free distribution of saplings to citizens to be planted at homes, schools, monasteries, and public and private places.

The event is organised to respond to the needs of Cambodia’s actual situation and global environmental trends for the effective and sustainable protection and conservation of biodiversity and natural resources in protected areas.

This will accelerate Cambodia’s journey towards becoming a carbon-neutral country with 60% forest cover by 2050.

“We at Coca-Cola Cambodia are impressed by the Ministry of Environment’s leadership in establishing this first regional nursery,” said Ho.

“The donation of the solar irrigation system aligns perfectly with our commitment to protect our planet. It is also our effort to reduce CO2 emissions across our operations and value chain, as outlined in our 2030 Sustainable Development Strategy from our parent company Swire Coca-Cola Limited. This initiative will not only benefit the environment but also empower local communities and markets to embrace sustainable practices. We are honoured to be a long-standing partner with the Ministry of Environment and contribute to building a greener Cambodia for future generations,” he added.

Last year, the beverage company provided an irrigation system for the nursery at Cardamom Mountains National Park in Kampong Speu province.

In a similar initiative in early 2021, the company, in partnership with the Apsara National Authority, handed over a solar water well for irrigation of seedlings and greenery plantation in the Angkor area, specifically in Leang Dai village in Angkor Thom district, Siem Reap province.

To support the government’s goal to increase forest cover, the Ministry has established a number of world-class seedling nurseries in Kampong Speu, Koh Kong, Siem Reap and Tboung Khmum provinces.

Sophalleth said yesterday that these nurseries will produce three types of saplings. One type will have a plant growth time of six to eight months, ready to be distributed to the public. People from around the country can collect these saplings during or after exhibitions and take them home to plant any type of tree they wish, all for free.

He noted that the second batch will be about one year old, these saplings can be used to replace any that may not have thrived. The third batch will be young trees grown to heights of five to six metres or up to eight metres, and they will be distributed for free to provinces and cities for planting purposes.

“We aim to ensure that all cities and provinces can cultivate green, beautiful, and clean roadsides,” he said.

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