Law 2173 of 2021: Medium and large size companies shall annually plant
at least two trees per employee
By means of Law 2173 of December 30, 2021, the Congress approved several measures aimed at promoting ecological restoration within Colombian territory, through the creation of “areas of life” and forests.
Among these new measures, all medium and large size companies duly registered in Colombia are compelled to annually implement tree planting programs, under the following conditions:
- The costs of the program shall be borne by the company.
- Tree plantings shall be performed within the areas previously chosen by the municipal authority, following the guidelines of the relevant environmental authority (local or regional).
- At least two trees shall be planted for each employee.
- The trees to be planted shall correspond to native species, and shall comply with technical criteria of specie, thermal floor, phytosanitary conditions, soil, and any other requirements defined by the authorities.
- The planting sessions shall be considered internal work-related activities and shall be conducted during working days and in compliance with health and safety requirements.
- The companies shall comply with these obligations on an annual basis, as from the year following the enactment of Law 2173.
- As a result, municipal authorities shall issue a Corporate “Life Sowing” Certificate.
- The obligations established in this law are different from any other environmental requirement.
Decree 1074 of 2015 establishes the criteria for classifying companies into micro, small, medium, and large size companies, based on the ordinary incomes of the company and the relevant economic activity.
Liquidated, dissolved or inactive companies, as well as those companies under reorganization processes, which cannot not comply with the obligations established in Law 2173 may file a certificate attesting their condition, in order to be exempted from complying with the obligations under Law 2173.
The Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development shall issue the regulation of the contents of Law 2173, including the exceptions that may apply, within the six months following the enactment of the law, i.e., on or before June 2022.
Author: Natalia Soto I [email protected] I Natural Resources