La Reserva Forest Foundation

La Reserva Forest Foundation is a Costa Rican non-profit, tax exempt foundation working to restore and preserve native tropical forests, dedicated to creating "tree bridges" linking isolated forest islands using volunteers and the local school communities, and fighting global warming through various carbon neutral projects.
Feb 23, 2015

Preserving Forests = Preserving Families

Low project cost and preserving families homes
Low project cost and preserving families homes

                  Experts today acknowledge the important role forests will have in mitigating the effects of climate change, check out this article a few months ago in the NY Times.

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/12/24/science/earth/restored-forests-are-making-inroads-against-climate-change-.html.

                  One tool, Payments for Environmental Services (PES), has enormous potential to help by protecting existing and threatened forest habitat that would otherwise be cleared. La Reserva has worked on many projects in the past to reforest degraded or cleared land back to native forest, but we jump at the opportunity to protect existing forest whenever we can for several reasons.

                  First, existing mature forests provide the remnant habitat that wildlife depends on for survival in places where the forest is severely fragmented. Second, mature forests are capable of capturing much more carbon than smaller, younger regenerating forests, making them more effective at trapping and holding atmospheric carbon. Third, mature forests are more cost-effective at storing carbon per hectare (2.5 acres) than young reforested stands. This allows more bang for our buck and the potential to save more forested land from being cleared or degraded. If the Monge’s property were cleared for farming and years later we try to replant, the cost of reforesting this land could run as high as ($US) 50,000 and take decades to provide the same kinds of habitat and services. And finally, rural communities love their forests. These forests are part of their social and cultural heritage, but the realities and pressures of generating a living for themselves and their families often create tough choices.

                  Understandably many small landowners choose to clear away the forest to grow crops or raise livestock to sell for a living. PES’s allow them an opportunity to make a different choice, one that places a value where they can earn an income, values like: erosion control, carbon storage, wildlife habitat, clean water, cultural heritage and more.

                  This project will raise enough money to protect 14 hectares (35 acres) of primary forest, forest that has never been cut before. This is an opportunity for both the Monge family and for La Reserva. This will allow the Monge family to be compensated for being stewards of their land, something they should be rewarded for. As our world continues to deploy climate change strategies, families like the Monge’s are needed who recognize the value of forests. We should not expect them to make such huge sacrifices in order to do their part for global climate change. Spread the word about how important primary forests are to the world.

Resident of the Monge
Resident of the Monge's forest
Another resident, the Keel-billed Toucan
Another resident, the Keel-billed Toucan
Yet another resident...Two-toed Sloth
Yet another resident...Two-toed Sloth
Satellite image of the Monge forest
Satellite image of the Monge forest

Links:

Feb 6, 2015

News You Can Use!

Miguel Angel Aldrete and the K4OW ambassadors
Miguel Angel Aldrete and the K4OW ambassadors

There’s great news about this project my friends!

On November 24th, my birthday, I received a phone call, out of the blue from Miguel Aldrete in San Diego, He explained that his son was interested in working with LRFF to fundraise, with his group of friends, to plant a project. What a birthday gift, it blew my mind, something I’ll never forget.

Miguel Angel Aldrete is 14 years old and has been working to reforest the world since he was 7 years old. He collaborated earlier on with Trees for the Future and is responsible for funding and planting over 14,000 trees so far. Miguel is also Founder and President of his own non-profit organization, Kids 4 Our World.

They have chosen this project, “For the Monkeys and 60 School Children” as the cause for their fundraising campaign and it has begun. They have buit a brand new website for their group and we’ve added a special page for them at our new website as well, where they can receive donations separately.

Not only are they looking to fund and plant this project, but also to fund a “field trip” to La Reserva in Costa Rica, each with a parent, this coming July. If they can reach their funding goal they will work with the 60 school children in Delicias to create the nursery for the project. Hopefully, they will be able to return in December to help plant it.

We have a great field trip planned for the kids in July with a futbol (soccer) game against the Maleku youths, going on the famous forest walk at La Reserve, seedling collection in the forest and transplantation in the La Reserva nursery, a cultural learning experience with the Maleku tribe and some fun stuff as well, i.e. zip lining, river rafting, visit to the waterfall and/or petroglyphs, etc.

Please be sure to check out the links in this progress report and see what these amazing kids are up to. They give me great hope for the future they are OUR future and are dedicated to healing our Earth. Miguel sees it, the truth, that our environment is the root of all other things. If we want a healthy world we must create a healthy environment and for us that means restoring the vital, tropical forests of the world.

They have received $185 to day so that we can…GET PLANTING!

Links:

Feb 4, 2015

THREATS AND CHALLENGES TO THE FORESTS OF LIBERIA

The wood behind me is to be burned for charcoal
The wood behind me is to be burned for charcoal

We are a little late submitting this report because this time Neabei was able to get out in the field to illustrate what has happened to the pristine Liberian forests and continues to happen.

As you know the research forest at the University of Liberia’s extension campus in Bensonville was the site of destruction during the many years of civil war in the country. The refugees camped near the university and out of necessity cut all of the trees, many rare and precious woods, to use for charcoal to cook. Neabei’s short, image illustrated report shows the damage that continues to tak place in the country. That’s why we are so excited about the donations we’ve been receiving for this project so that we can…GET PLATING IT! It will give a great boost to this war torn and disease plagued country, they deserve it. Neabei’s report follows:

This summary report depicts some of the numerous ways in which the forests of Liberia are being depleted by the unlawful operations of citizens and even foreigners in the name of survivability.

The forest are becoming very thin as the trees are being cut down for charcoal burning and illegal pit sawing activities.

Subsistent rotational farming activities also have great part to play in the depletion of the Liberian forests whereas there is no reforestation strategy at the level of individual subsistent farmers.

I was on a tour in some of the forest areas to see how the actions of illicit forest families and individuals are depleting the forests. 

Thin forest canopy from forest degradation
Thin forest canopy from forest degradation
Subsistence farming impacts
Subsistence farming impacts
Neabei in the field, on the trail
Neabei in the field, on the trail

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