The British Army plans to plant up to two million trees on military sites across the UK in the battle against climate change.
Planting trees, managing peatland, solar farms and eco-friendly vehicles are ways in which the British Army is attempting to combat the evolving threat of climate change.
The initiative comes on the back of World Environment Day on 5 June, the annual United Nations Day for encouraging worldwide awareness and action to protect our environment.
Twenty-five sites that are suitable for woodland creation, totalling some 750 hectares – the equivalent of 1,022 football pitches – have been identified by the Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO) after an extensive survey.
Two new foresters have been employed to manage the new woodland creation.
About 30,000 trees have already been planted by the forestry team, creating 10 hectares of new woodland, the majority at Beckingham Training Area in Lincolnshire.
In addition to this, 250,000 trees have been planted to replace trees felled as part of the woodland harvesting and management programme.
In March, Lieutenant General Richard Nugee, the Ministry of Defence’s (MOD) lead on climate change and sustainability, published a report communicating the interest of defence in a changing climate as its people will often be placed at the centre of it.
The Army is one of the largest landowners in the UK and believes it is important to set an example by making its garrisons self-sustainable in terms of their energy needs.
Carbon-efficient accommodation for soldiers training on Salisbury Plain is being piloted.
Work has started on a solar farm at the Defence of School of Transport, Leconfield, as well as at barracks in Gloucester, Suffolk and Thorney Island – with an aspiration to deliver a further 80 solar farms across the Army estate over the next seven years.
At more than 35 defence establishments the MOD is installing the first tranche of electric vehicle charging points.
It is also supporting the Government’s plan to reach net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.
In November, two RAF stations received electric vehicles as part of the MOD’s ultra-low emissions programme.
Cover image: The Army is to plant two million trees in the fight against climate change (Picture: MOD).