October 18, 2018 3 min read
10,782 Trees Planted in Bolivia and Ecuador
Another couple of reforestation projects have been completed and we're happy to share the latest updates. These two share a common theme of both being in Amazon Rainforest countries, where deforestation has had a severe negative impact over the past several decades (some stats on that below).
These projects may be a drop in the proverbial basin when it comes to the restoration work still in need of support, but we believe that every tree matters and will continue planting until the world's best scientists tell us that the planet is finally ok on trees again. Spoiler alert: that probably won't happen anytime soon.
So here are the high level highlights!
Bolivia - 5,200 Trees Planted
This reforestation project was completed in the southern Amazon basin region in Bolivia, an area considered a hotspot of biodiversity due to the variety of plant and animal life it contains, as well as its importance to the overall Amazon Rainforest ecosystem.
The focus was to restore parts of the forest that had been degraded due to plantations, implement an agroforestry model for local farmers, expand habitats, create wind shields, minimize soil erosion and increase humidity, and to provide education to local families and farmers about the importance of tree conservation.
Yes, that's a tall order! But that's the great thing about reforestation and trees themselves. They provide many benefits, especially when coupled with smart ecological planning and ongoing maintenance.
8 hectares (20 acres) were reforested through One Tree Planted, much of it on land surrounding farms. This was part of an ongoing effort to reforest 225 hectares (556 acres) in the region over time. In addition, 200 trees were also planted on the grounds of a local school with enthusiastic support from students and parents.
Now, onto Ecuador.
Ecuador - 5,582 Trees Planted
The focus of this project was to protect and restore critically endangered natural habitats, facilitate the long-term health of the "Viringuito" water stream, and to engage the local farming community in both short-term and long-term incentives for ecological conservation.
One Tree Planted worked with the Mindo Cloud Forest Foundation and the Nueva Esperanza Cacao Farmers Association and their members to plant a variety of trees. This effort also aims to preserve the ecosystem and strengthen climate change resiliency, while providing education and training on the benefits of sustainable forest management in order to maintain the overall vitality of this special region.
Reforestation is one of the 4 work areas of this project. The others are:
-Habitat conservation of 6 forest reserves, with 3 micro-corridors
-Ecological inquiry of biodiversity, including student science
-Ecotourism to financially incentivize conservation
Deforestation in the Amazon continues to worsen, even as great projects like this are working hard to restore the damage already done. 2017 was the second worst year on record for tree cover loss. According to World Resources Institute, "in total, the tropics experienced 15.8 million hectares (39.0 million acres) of tree cover loss in 2017 alone, an area the size of Bangladesh. That’s the equivalent of losing 40 football fields of trees every minute for an entire year." Wow. The 2018 numbers aren't in yet, but they're not likely to be much better.
While stats like these give us a profound sense of loss, this is also what motivates us to continue focusing on restoration. As our pro-nature allies do their important work in shifting the unsustainable practices and policies that lead to deforestation in the first place, our sole mission is to plant trees.
Wherever reforestation is needed, we'll be there to re-green, one tree at a time 🌲
by Diana Chaplin
Canopy Director & Eco-Storyteller
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