One Tree Planted

Ending the month of May, Iceland was nominated as the chosen country for our tree donations. With your help, we have raised £85 which will go directly towards One Tree Planted in an effort to help restore the deforestation that has occurred over the years.

Iceland used to have up to 40% forest coverage centuries ago, which has now been reduced to only 0.5%. One Tree Planted aims to plant trees on the lower south-facing slopes of the farm known as ‘Dragons Nest’. The team believes this land has a lot of ecological potential for restoration, leading to their ultimate goals of carbon sequestration and soil conservation.

Choose where we donate to next by submitting your vote on our survey below!

What is Carbon Sequestration?

Carbon sequestration with restoring deforestation refers to the process of capturing and storing carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere by replanting trees and restoring forest ecosystems in areas that have been deforested or degraded. Deforestation is a significant contributor to greenhouse gas emissions and climate change, as trees absorb CO2 during photosynthesis and store it in their biomass.

When forests are cleared for various purposes such as agriculture, logging, or urbanization, the carbon stored in trees and vegetation is released into the atmosphere as CO2. This contributes to the increase in greenhouse gases and exacerbates climate change. However, by restoring deforested areas through reforestation and afforestation efforts, it is possible to mitigate the effects of deforestation and sequester carbon.

What is Soil Conservation?

Soil conservation in the context of deforestation refers to the practices and techniques aimed at protecting and preserving the health, fertility, and structure of the soil in areas that have undergone deforestation. Deforestation can have significant negative impacts on soil quality and stability, leading to erosion, loss of nutrients, and reduced water-holding capacity.

When forests are cleared, the protective canopy of trees is removed, leaving the soil exposed to the elements. Without the tree roots holding the soil together, rainwater and wind can easily erode the topsoil, washing away valuable nutrients and organic matter. This process is known as soil erosion and can lead to land degradation, reduced agricultural productivity, and increased sedimentation in water bodies.

To address soil conservation in deforested areas, various measures can be taken:

  1. Reforestation and afforestation: Restoring forests by planting trees helps to prevent soil erosion and stabilize the soil. Tree roots bind the soil particles together, reducing the risk of erosion and providing physical protection.
  2. Conservation tillage: Instead of traditional ploughing and tilling methods that disrupt the soil structure, conservation tillage techniques such as no-till or minimum tillage are employed. These methods help to reduce soil disturbance, minimize erosion, and maintain soil organic matter.
  3. Contour plowing: By plowing along the contour lines of slopes rather than up and down, contour plowing helps slow down the flow of water, reducing its erosive power and preventing soil loss.
  4. Terracing: Constructing terraces on steep slopes creates flat areas that help slow down and retain water, preventing it from eroding the soil. Terraces also act as physical barriers, reducing the length of slopes and minimizing runoff.
  5. Mulching: Applying organic mulch, such as straw or wood chips, to the soil surface helps to retain moisture, reduce soil temperature fluctuations, and prevent erosion caused by rainfall impact.
  6. Cover cropping: Planting cover crops, such as legumes or grasses, during the non-growing season helps to protect the soil from erosion, improve soil structure, and add organic matter when incorporated into the soil.
  7. Conservation of riparian zones: Protecting and restoring vegetation along rivers and streams helps to stabilize the banks, reduce sedimentation, and filter out pollutants before they reach the water bodies.

These soil conservation practices aim to maintain soil fertility, prevent erosion, promote water infiltration, and support sustainable land use in deforested areas. Implementing a combination of these techniques can help mitigate the negative impacts of deforestation on soil quality and ensure the long-term productivity and sustainability of the land.

Why Plant Trees in Iceland?

Community and ecological benefits:

Planting trees in Iceland, including in the local village of Breiðdalsvík, can bring several benefits to the area. Here are some reasons why it is a good idea:

  1. Soil stabilization: Iceland’s landscape is characterized by volcanic soils that are susceptible to erosion. Planting trees helps stabilize the soil, preventing erosion caused by wind and water. The roots of trees bind the soil particles together, reducing the risk of soil loss and maintaining the fertility of the land.
  2. Windbreak and shelter: Iceland experiences strong winds throughout the year. Trees act as windbreaks, providing shelter for the village and protecting the surrounding areas from strong gusts. This can create more favourable conditions for agriculture, outdoor activities, and general comfort for residents.
  3. Microclimate improvement: Trees contribute to the creation of microclimates by providing shade, reducing wind speed, and regulating temperature and humidity. This can lead to improved growing conditions for plants, increased biodiversity, and a more pleasant local environment for residents.
  4. Carbon sequestration: Trees are excellent at absorbing carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere through photosynthesis and storing it in their biomass. By planting trees, the village can contribute to carbon sequestration, helping to mitigate climate change and reduce the village’s carbon footprint.
  5. Beautification and aesthetics: Trees enhance the visual appeal of the village and surrounding areas, adding greenery, colour, and natural beauty to the landscape. This can create a more pleasant living environment, attract tourists, and potentially boost local businesses that cater to visitors.
  6. Biodiversity promotion: Planting trees can provide habitats and food sources for various species, contributing to the preservation and promotion of local biodiversity. Trees can attract birds, insects, and other wildlife, creating a more vibrant and ecologically balanced ecosystem.
  7. Recreational opportunities: Tree planting initiatives can create green spaces and forests that can be used for recreational activities such as hiking, picnicking, and nature observation. These opportunities can enhance the quality of life for residents and provide economic benefits through nature-based tourism.
  8. Educational and community engagement: Tree planting projects can involve the local community, raising awareness about environmental conservation and providing opportunities for education and engagement. Such initiatives can strengthen community bonds, instill a sense of pride and ownership, and foster a culture of environmental stewardship.

The Ocean Clean-up Project

The Ocean Clean-up project is dedicated to keeping our oceans clean and safe and removing all the toxic waste and pollutants that are dumped there. Throughout May, we have raised £52 which will go towards their continued and valuable efforts. Here are some of the highlights of what they’ve been up to this month:

May 8th – Interceptor 007 collected 70,000kg worth of rubbish on the LA Country coastlines.

May 12th – Interceptor 020 announced being displayed in the Indonesian Cisadane River, tackling an estimated 1,000,000kg of plastic emitted into the Java Sea.

May 16th – Stopped tsunamis carrying thousands of plastics down the Rio Motagua into the Caribbean Sea with the new Interceptor Barricade.

May 22nd – Interceptor 006 has been assembled and being used to remove waste and free up space in Guatemala