Dubai: Dubai is keen to go green.

Not only are people being urged to plant union trees, an earlier campaign in Dubai to plant one million trees was launched in November 2010 by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

The initiative was the brain child of Lieutenant General Dahi Khalfan Tamim, Commander in Chief of Dubai Police. The plan for the initiative was to plant 250,000 trees every year over a period of four years.

Shaikh Mohammad planted the first tree at the main square inside the Dubai Police Academy on the day of the launch.

The campaign has been launched by Dubai Police in cooperation with Dubai Municipality and is managed by the Dubai Police Academy.

The initiative’s committee had held their first meeting earlier this year, where they discussed the organisational structure of the initiative.

The new plants will promote ecological balance, help purify the air and make Dubai greener, as well as combat desertification and protect natural resources.

According to the International Tree Foundation, the world needs more trees than ever as large tracts of forest are harvested leaving wildlife without habitat and the earth without precious oxygen-generating lungs.

“Trees and forests are immeasurably precious. Healthy, abundant forests don’t just enhance lives, they save lives,” stated the foundation on its website. “They provide shelter, fuel, medicine and nutrition and are central to many spiritual and cultural beliefs. They also enable us and other species to breathe. Up to 1.6 billion people depend on forests for their livelihoods and 50 per cent of the world’s species live in tropical forests alone.”

The tree foundation estimates that unsustainable human consumption of trees is a massive threat to the planet noting that, “human pressures pose the biggest threat to forests – we destroy 124,000 acres every day”.