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Mar 12, 2019

The Brazilian Forest Code

Bazilian land area seen by drone
Bazilian land area seen by drone

Did you know that Brazil has a law, The Brazilian Forest Code, that requires that some landowners have 20% of their lands covered by forests. Nowadays, 21 million hectares officially fall under this law, and if they were actually all restored, an estimated 9 gigatons of CO2 would be sequestered from the atmosphere. This equals the total emissions from China over the entire last year!

The thought behind this law is that: even though riverbeds, freshwater springs and in general, ecologically sensitive areas are located within someone´s private land and this person is ´allowed´ to use it, the state considers them property of the state and of the society and therefore this land  area deserves to be protected or restored! 

Our restoration projects in Brazil are working to tie these individual pieces of land together, and this way create ´forest corridors',  which will make it easier for wildlife to roam around.

Read more about the Brazilian Forest Code in this blog

And last but not least: thanks for your support! 

Mar 12, 2019

The Lyngdoh Clan: guard of the sacred forest

Tambor Lyngdoh
Tambor Lyngdoh

For many indigenous communities in the world, forests are much more than just trees: they store souls and spirits and are of great cultural and religious value. In India there are over 100.000 of these sacred forests, mostly existing of forest fragments in agricultural landscapes, where community members are actively involved in their protection and management, providing important refuges for conservation of biological diversity, including medicinal plants.

A great example is our project in the Khasi Hills, where the Lyngdoh clan has been responsible for the guardianship of this sacred grove for centuries. They believe the forest belongs to the local deity Labasa, who protects this forest and their community from anything bad happening to them. It is therefore entirely forbidden to hunt, cut trees or take anything from out of the forest.

Tambor Lyngdoh, who is head of the federation and project partner to WeForest, feels proud of his role. "Traditionally, our ancestors preserved the forest, because the forest gave our people everything. But in recent times, we started to take only from the forest and stopped taking care of it. But now it is time to restore the balance".

Read more about how we work with Sacred Groves in India in this story.

And last but not least: thanks a million for your support! 

Dec 17, 2018

Teaching for Trees in Brazil

Teaching for trees in Brazil
Teaching for trees in Brazil

Teaching a weekend course on Tropical Forest Restoration in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in exchange for trees being planted for WeForest’s Atlantic Forest Project, Ricardo Cesar, WeForest’s Brazil Country Representative, does not shy away from dedicating his free time to engage with over 20 graduate and undergraduate students, spark lively discussions and plant more trees!

The students had backgrounds in, amongst others, Environmental Engineering, Agronomy, Biology and even Economics and theoretical discussions on the history, practice and legislation of ecological restoration in Brazil then turned into real practical exercises.

Ricardo: ´In one of the exercises I simulated that I was a landowner. The students then had to propose a plan to improve the productivity and ecological benefits of my land. It was very constructive since we could see the conflict of views between students and landowners, and negotiate trade-offs. Besides being fun, it was the closest that many of them had ever been to talking with a ´real´ small farmer´.

Finally, the course ended by practicing using open-licence geoprocessing software to map areas required for restoration by the Brazilian law.

With this, Ricardo shows us that educating the local community literally helps plant trees.

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