These numbers only begin to show just how incredible the rainforest is. We rely on it everyday of our lives, no matter where we live. It stores carbon, drives the water cycle, is central to livelihoods, releases oxygen and keeps the planet cool.
Despite this, we are losing around 135 plant, animal and insect species every day due to deforestation. The best hope of protecting the rainforest lies in giving more control to the 350 million people whose lives and livelihoods rely on the rainforest. Those who have been living within the forest for hundreds of years know more about protecting the trees than we ever will.
A huge body of research shows that modest investments for securing land rights for indigenous communities generate huge economic, social and environmental returns for local communities and the world’s changing climate. Yet too often, indigenous and rainforest communities have been persecuted, evicted and killed for their lands. Protecting their rights are how we protect their forest.
This is why giving indigenous people a voice is Cool Earth’s priority. Cool Earth gives communities the tools they need to keep trees standing in the face of recent political and economic threats. Tools like governance training and capacity support build households and villages that make the forest more economically useful standing than sold.
Earth Overshoot Day. The IPCC report. Elections in Brazil. COP 23. We have all the knowledge we could need about how important rainforest is to the future of our planet.
2018 so far has been a year of conversation, change and championing those who need our help. Thank you for taking action with Cool Earth.