The climate balance of our planet

Thirty-one percent of the Earth’s surface is covered with forest. Tropical forests in particular are important in regulating the global climate because they store about half of the water reserves of our planet and also recycle water through mist and clouds. Tropical forests also absorb and store enormous quantities of carbon; in return they give back oxygen. Forest fires, deforestation and unsustainable agriculture cause the release of large quantities of carbon, which binds with oxygen to become carbon dioxide—a very important greenhouse gas which builds up in the atmosphere to cause dangerous climate change. The protection and restoration of rainforests is therefore of great importance in combatting climate change. Tropical forests also serve as an important repository of the bulk of terrestrial biodiversity—in fact, they are the home to over 50 percent of the biodiversity on our planet. And equally important, over 2 billion people directly or indirectly depend on forests for food, water, timber, income and medicines. In other words, a forest is much more than we initially think.

Time is running out

Scientists warn that with the current speed of deforestation and climate change, ecosystems will continue to degrade. This means that by 2050, roughly 25 percent of all current plant and animal species will become extinct. This accelerates the current processes of climate change and has far-reaching and negative economic impacts on all of us.

7 times the Netherlands

We have lost something beautiful on this planet. We lost a forest. A forest seven times the size of the Netherlands. Over the past 25 years, this forest disappeared remarkably fast. What used to be green, flourishing and full of life is now dead. In Indonesia alone, deforestation has destroyed over 30 million hectares of rich tropical forest and in turn generated roughly 70 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions in the country. This takes place in a context where around 60 million people directly depend on the forest for their survival.

Gula GulaFood Forest

The Gula Gula Food Forest is a great example of how we can combat processes of climate change and restore biodiversity while providing better livelihoods and income opportunities for local populations. Click below to read more about our food forest in Indonesia.

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