DODOMA, The Tanzanian government has issued a 24-month time-frame for all state-owned schools and institutions to convert their septic tanks into bio-septics to power their kitchens.

Vice-President, Samia Suluhu Hassan said the plan is meant to phase out the use of charcoal and firewood, a leading source of devastating ecological and environmental effects that include deforestation.

You have two years from now to change, Samia said in a speech read on her behalf by the Minister in-charge of Union and Environment docket, January Makamba. The Vice-President was officiating during a tree-planting campaign, a second in a row held at the University of Dodoma (UDOM) grounds, aimed at transforming the capital city into a green city.

During the opening speech, the VP said all the institutions using charcoal and firewood must now workout on adopting biogas to power their kitchens. Apparently, she said, other state-institutions that must transform their source of energy in their kitchens include the National Service as well as the Prison unit.

It was not clear the amount of charcoal or firewood spent by these institutions per annum, but the VP maintained that, It's time to offer farewell to charcoal and firewood.

The Deputy Minister in the same ministry, Kangi Lugola on the other hand called upon investors to observe environmental legislation on discharging their duties and to levels that do not contradict with environmental conservation efforts.

The Deputy Minister said, Some investors had been recklessly polluting the environment and subsequently cutting trees in the pretext of implementing the industrial economy campaign.

This is very wrong. We want them to protect and preserve the environment as well, he noted. Lugola emphasised that as the country embarks on industrial economy, protecting the environment should not be underestimated.

He asked the university to ensure that trees planted on its soil are protected for the sustainability of the environment and its people.

Categorically, the UDOM Vice-Chancellor, Prof Idrisa Kikula, said the institution will review its by-laws to ensure all its colleges adopt the state-led environmental campaign.

He said, As we mark our 10th anniversary, the tree planting initiative tops our programme. He went on to note that the university had already planted 9,500 trees since it launched a tree-planting campaign in December, last year. We target to plant over 30,000 trees every year, he said.