Building a Restoration Economy
“Human history can be seen, in one sense, as the history of our relationship with trees”.
– Peter Conway, Tree Medicine
As our world becomes more complex and our society becomes more technologically advanced, it is easy to underestimate the fundamental role tropical rainforests play in human and planetary well-being. In addition to regulating climate and global weather patterns, tropical rainforests are among the Earth’s most precious resources and have a profound influence on freshwater provision, climate stabilisation, pollination and food production, air quality, temperature, biodiversity, medicines, and human health.
The benefits obtained from the services provided by healthy ecosystems underpin our very existence and are the pillars of our planetary well-being. This natural capital and the associated ecosystem services are being referred to as ‘the nature economy’, and the value of these services, if it is even possible to measure in economic terms, is estimated to be over A$146 trillion dollars per year globally.
You won’t find these on any government’s balance sheet, and these vital life-sustaining services can only continue supporting life on our planet if these critically important natural regions are protected.
Globally, tropical deforestation and degradation have reduced the area covered by tropical forests from 12 percent to less than 5 percent of Earth’s land area. In many places around the planet, ecosystems are increasingly endangered, along with the vital services they provide.
Thankfully, there is a solution…
“ You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”
– R.Buckminster Fuller
For more than two decades, Rainforest Rescue has worked to understand, value, and protect our tropical rainforests, with a primary focus on the most ancient of rainforests, the Daintree. Working alongside members of the local community, guided by impeccable scientists, and in consultation with Indigenous elders from the region, we’ve developed best practices for the restoration of rainforests and creating contiguous nature corridors as part of our Protection Portfolio. Our focus on restoration using diverse native species adds layers to the rainforest complexity, striving to mimic Nature’s own template as best we can, ensuring best success rates and emergent, restored rainforest.
Today our new native Nursery, which will be the largest in the region and will ultimately produce 150,000 trees per year from seed, provides Rainforest Rescue the opportunity to scale up restoration efforts to new heights, provide training and horticultural skills development, create new partnership opportunities and further our deep commitment to rainforest restoration and protection. We believe that this will support the foundation of an emerging restoration economy in Far North Queensland.
As our Western culture enters this time of transition from unsustainable systems of that degrade nature’s resilience towards a renewable-resource economy, the choices we make and our daily actions can help to restore the deep kinship relations between people, plants, animals, and the Earth.
There are many small things we can do to make a change – from diet and consumption habits, to simply gardening and planting trees, to supporting restoration efforts locally, to supporting Rainforest Rescue’s efforts in the Daintree.
Rainforest Rescue is planting trees – more every year as we scale up our new nursery. We aim to supply our restoration partners with highest quality, affordable and biodiverse trees.
More trees, more habitat, less atmospheric carbon, and more oxygen. Simple.
Trees are the answer.
And so are we – all of us. We are not casual observers, but active participants in this unfolding evolutionary process. How we live, how we spend, and how we vote, all have the power to create a greener future for everyone. Whether it’s your local park, your local state or national park, your own backyard, or your own forest…take care of it. Protect it. Enhance it. Plant more trees.
Rainforest Rescue continues to look for new and different ways to respond to the challenges we face. We are proud of the extraordinary environmental achievements we have accomplished together, fueled by a common purpose, and expressed as a love for the natural world that is beyond words.
Trees are the answer.
And so are you.
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