Wednesday, May 27, 2009

The Magic of Rebuilding a Rainforest

UPDATE, 4:45 PM: Smits' organization sent me this info "We recently had our Mother's Day campaign: M.O.M. - Missing Orangutan Mothers. You can learn more about the campaign here:http://redapes.org/mom Orangutans are critically endangered in the wild because of rapid deforestation and the expansion of palm oil plantations. If nothing is done to protect orangutans, they could be extinct in less than 5 years!"

ORIGINAL POST: I love nerdy lectures ... especially this one (BELOW). This is a fascinating, 20-minute lecture at a TED conference by Biologist Willie Smits on how he rebuilt a rainforest in Borneo in the span of 5-7 years ... which regionally reversed climate change, rebuilt lives for the families in the area, saved wildlife, created more drinkable water, and produced sustainable fuel. The below video is both shocking and optimistic, which is why I have posted it -- it shows there is hope when greed is put aside.

As parents, it's important we have hope to share with our children, especially about the future of our world and its environment.

Smits efforts all began while trying to save orangutans, which are being decimated by deforestation in order meet the world's insatiable need for palm oil. Says his organization Orangutan Outreach --

Palm oil is everywhere. This internationally traded vegetable oil is found in thousands of popular products, including ice cream, chocolate, biscuits, crisps, margarine, toothpaste, soap, detergents and cosmetics. The shelves in your local supermarket are full of products containing palm oil, which is contributing to the annihilation of rainforest wildlife. Without knowing it, millions of people are fuelling a phenomenal growth in demand for a crop that is leaving a trail of destruction in its wake.

“The rate of loss of orangutans has never been greater than in the last three years, and oil-palm plantations are mostly to blame. We are facing a silent massacre, taking place far from where people can see what is going on. We need international co-operation now to address this crisis,” says Smits.

Here are practical ways you at home can take action -- they are simple actions, the kind I advocate in my book The Mom's Guide to Growing Your Family Green.

If only we followed the lead of this one man!



1 comment:

redapes said...

Thanks for posting Willie's TED talk on your blog and linking to Orangutan Outreach!

We recently had our Mother's Day campaign: M.O.M. - Missing Orangutan Mothers, which ties in really well with your blog. You can learn more about the campaign here:
http://redapes.org/momOrangutans are critically endangered in the wild because of rapid deforestation and the expansion of palm oil plantations. If nothing is done to protect orangutans, they could be extinct in less than 5 years!

Thanks again,

Richard Zimmerman
Director, Orangutan Outreachhttp://redapes.orgReach out and save the orangutans!
Facebook Cause: http://causes.com/redapes