The Amazon rainforest is about to get a big breath of fresh air.
In the world’s largest tropical reforestation project, conservations are going to reforest over 74,000 acres (30,000 hectares) of the Brazilian Amazon with 73 million trees. The 6-year initiative is a huge push towards the nation’s reforestation goal of planting 12 million hectares of trees under the Paris Agreement.
The Amazon forest is home to the richest biodiversity of any ecosystem on the planet; a recent report described some 400 new species discovered in the Amazon between 2014 and 2015 alone.
While the Amazon’s preservation is still a cause for concern, however, the country saw a 90% drop in illegal logging after passing more aggressive legislation to protect the rainforest in 2004.
“This is a breathtakingly audacious project,” said M. Sanjayan, CEO of Conservation International, one of the partners behind the effort. “The fate of the Amazon depends on getting this right — as do the region’s 25 million residents, its countless species and the climate of our planet.”
The organization announced the multi-million dollar project last month during the Rock in Rio 2017 music festival in Rio de Janiero, Brazil. In addition to Conservation International, the Brazilian Ministry of Environment, the Global Environment Facility, the World Bank, the Brazilian Biodiversity Fund, and Amazonia Live will also have a hand in the initiative.
“A new chapter is being written for the Brazilian Amazon with this initiative,” said Rodrigo Medeiros, vice president of CI’s Brazil office. “Protecting the Amazon is not something we should think in the future — we have to do it now.”
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