Brazil is also home to a biodiversity hotspot which is far more depleted than the Amazon: the Atlantic Forest. This forest once stretched over 130 million hectares along Brazil's southeastern coast. Intense deforestation began 500 years ago and since then 93% of the forest has disappeared; only 7% of the forest remains. Forest fragmentation leads to slowly degrading soils, landscapes and biodiversity loss.
To combat the progressive loss of biodiversity, corridors of forest are planted between remaining forest fragments. Local species, many of them endangered, will be able to move between previously isolated patches and diversify their gene pools, which is important for the survival of endangered species, such as the native black lion tamarin (Leontopithecus chrisopygus). Communities in the area collect and grow native trees and are trained in plant propagation.
The impact of planting 1 million trees in this project: 500 ha put into restoration 158,500 tonnes of CO2 sequestered over a 30 year period, 240 employed full time in project implementation for 50 months, 400 people trained in plant propagation, 2,000 ha of land benefiting from improved water quality, $2,500 income per year generated by each family-run tree nursery, 10 functional community plant nurseries generated, 115 indigenous tree species planted, 200 species' habitat range increased.