Reforestation

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Forests and climate

How a 2 hectare forest in Bangalore’s heart has lowered temperature and raised its water table Maya Kilpadi; earthamag; 18 May 2016

The summer temperatures in Bangalore this year have been cause for particularly high concern among its residents, with some claiming that daytime temperature shot up to 41 degrees Celsius one day in April. This summer has surely felt hotter than most old Bangaloreans remember them ever being. But, there are some parts of the city that have kept the unrelenting heat away. Walk around the lush Indian Institute of Science (IISc) Campus and you will encounter several species of trees, native and exotic. The 400 acre campus is home to 112 species of trees and 45 species of grasses. There are gulmohar lined avenues, large, raintree-shaded bowers, and colourful bursts of laburnum, jacaranda, and tabebuia. And then you walk past the Centre for Ecological Sciences department (CES) and you stop short! The vegetation here is unlike anything you’ve encountered on the rest of the campus so far. Gigantic, woody vines weave endlessly like lace through a lush canopy, the trees are thick and dense, letting only a modicum of sunlight through, and all around you, in the cool air, is the hum of insects and birds. If you feel like you are in the rainforests of Agumbe, you’re not alone. You are in IISc’s mini-forest, a forest planted by a team of researchers led by senior faculty member Dr. T.V. Ramachandra (Energy and Wetlands Research Group).

India

Man single-handedly grows a forest larger than Central Park

China

China restores great swaths of denuded forests with exemplary conservation program Lacy Cooke; inhabit; 21 Mar 2016

For years China was notorious for denuding its forests of vegetation to expand their economy. The economy grew, but water sources were tainted, air polluted, and animal habitats demolished. Only a few years ago, just 2 percent of China’s forests were undisturbed, and to make matters worse, the destruction of forests leads to one fifth of climate change-inducing emissions. Horrendous floods in 1998 that stemmed from the lack of trees prompted the government to finally take action. They implemented the National Forest Conservation Program, and a new study reveals it’s working. [...] they banned logging in many areas and then paid farmers, who were accustomed to earning money by cutting down trees for wood, to plant trees instead. Some local citizens were even paid to monitor forests and report any illegal logging. After several years of this, the Chinese government claimed their conservation project had begun to show signs of progress, a claim confirmed in a new independent analysis.

China’s eco-civilization plan calls for 23% forest cover by 2020 Josh Marks; inhabit; 30 May 2016

Besides the United States, China has done more than any other country to contribute to climate change. But while China’s greenhouse gas emissions are rapidly warming the planet, the Asian nation is quickly shifting its focus to climate change mitigation to ensure a sustainable biosphere for future generations. According to a new United Nations report, China plans to build an “ecological civilization” that could be a model for the rest of the world. The project includes an initiative to cover nearly one quarter of the country with forests by 2020. The report, titled “Green is gold: The strategy and actions of China’s ecological civilization,” was launched at the UN Environmental Assembly in Nairobi, Kenya. Zhu Guangyao, executive vice president of the Chinese Ecological Civilization Research and Promotion Association, called ecological civilization a new concept in the development of human civilization that requires respect for nature. “The outdated view that man can conquer nature and ignore the bearing capacity of resources and the environment should be completely abandoned,” said Guangyao. “Conscientious efforts should be made to live in harmony with nature, allowing for a new approach to modernization characterized by such co-existence.”

Green is gold: The strategy and actions of China’s ecological civilization REPORTfrom UN Environment Programme; refiefweb; 26 May 2016

The Chinese government has been paying close attention to ecological and environmental issues for many years. It has highlighted Ecological Civilization (or Eco-civilization for short) and environmental protection as a long-term strategy vital to the country’s modernization and its people’s well-being. China started framing environmental protection as a fundamental national policy in the 1980s and established sustainable development as a national strategy in the 1990s. At the beginning of the 21st century, the government proposed a “Scientific Outlook on Development” that is people-centered, fully coordinated, and environmentally sustainable. In particularly, since late 2012, the government has incorporated Eco-civilization into the “Five-in-One” blueprint of socialism with Chinese characteristics, which outlines a commitment to “innovative, coordinated, green, open and shared development”.

Europe

Watch: How Europe is greener now than 100 years ago Washinton Post

Animated graphics

UK

UK National Forest

How millions of trees brought a broken landscape back to life John Vidal; Guardian; 7 Aug 2016

Twenty-five years ago, the Midlands villages of Moira, Donisthorpe and Overseal overlooked a gruesome landscape. The communities were surrounded by opencast mines, old clay quarries, spoil heaps, derelict coal workings, polluted waterways and all the other ecological wreckage of heavy industry. The air smelt and tasted unpleasant and the land was poisoned. There were next to no trees, not many jobs and little wildlife. Following the closure of the pits, people were deserting the area for Midlands cities such as Birmingham, Derby and Leicester. The future looked bleak. Today, a pastoral renaissance is taking place. Around dozens of former mining and industrial communities, in what was the broken heart of the old Midlands coalfield, a vast, splendid forest of native oak, ash and birch trees is emerging, attracting cyclists, walkers, birdwatchers, canoeists, campers and horse-riders.

The National Forest 25 Years of Transformation thenationalforest; YouTube; 19 Jul 2016

Showcasing the transformation of The National Forest over 25 Years.

National Trust - Thorneythwaite

I’m sorry if rewilding hurts farmers, but we need it Nick Cohen; The Guardian; 3 Sept 2016

The National Trust’s purchase of Thorneythwaite sheep farm is part of a plan to reshape the landscape to meet the threat of global warming

Reforestation in Norway: showing what’s possible in Scotland and beyond Rewilding Britain; 20 Jan 2016

Scotland and Norway suffered large-scale deforestation over centuries but over the last 100 years the trees have been returning to Norway. It could be happening in Scotland too

Aerial reforestation

Planes Can Plant 900,000 Trees A Day With Seed Bombs Culture of Awareness; 10 Apr 2016

Old military planes are now being reconditioned and refitted with new mechanics. Using these planes, we can drop tree bombs instead of landmines.

Aerial bombardment to reforest the earth Paul Brown, Environment Correspondent; Guradian; 2 Sep 1999

Old Military Planes Could Drop 900,000 Tree-Bombs a Day Brian Merchant; TreeHugger; 19 Oct 2010

NASA scientist is using drones to plant 1 billion trees per year Joe McCarthy; Global Citizen; May 24, 2016

Thailand

Thailand seed bombs: aerial reforestation to foster new growth on damaged land by 2017 TomoNews US; 5 Jul 2013 The Thai government has initiated a five-year pilot project that uses aerial reforestation to boost forest regeneration. Aerial reforestation is a technique used to quickly plant large numbers of new trees. Local tree seeds are mixed with soil and shaped into small balls called seed bombs. The seed bombs are dropped from airplanes over deteriorated forests.

These bombs don’t kill, they give life.