MADAGASCAR

Some of the rarest animal and plant species on our planet evolved on this large, lush Island Nation, separated from the East Coast of Africa by 250 Miles of Indian Ocean.

 

Now less than 10% of Madagascar’s original forests are left. Animals (including 103 species of lemur) are displaced and endangered, and local inhabitants have lost the ability to live sustainably on the ravished land. 

 

A century of extensive logging of the rainforests and mangroves has led to so much soil erosion that in 2004 astronauts reported Madagascar looking like it was ‘bleeding into the ocean’ as it’s nutrient rich red earth washed away. Forests have also been cleared for ever growing cattle herds, coffee crops and shrimp farms. 

 

Mangrove forests are essential ecosystems. Their roots serve as an anchor for the soil and coastline, preventing erosion and creating a barrier between harsh ocean systems and land. They also store 2-4 times more Co2 than even tropical rain forests, house thriving fish populations in their root networks, and are regarded as a climate ‘super solution’ by the UN. 

 

Our partners Eden Reforestation Projects launched the Madagascar project sites in 2007, training and employing the local community to restore ecologically devastated mangrove estuaries in the northwest of the country. In less than a decade the mangrove was thriving, with shrimp, algae and flamingos all returning to the area. 

 

That initial success has led to Eden Reforestation Projects expanding to include a variety of native dry deciduous species, and over 60 projects with extensive infrastructure, employing thousands of local people from nursery and reforestation training, to guarding the land, seedbanks and fire towers.

 

Since 2018 Eden Projects’ has even managed a conservatory and Nature Center for endangered animals and trees. As of July 2020 Eden Projects have planted over 300 Million trees, with approx. 14 million more being planted every month