Pledge by Para la Naturaleza
One Million Trees for Puerto RicoTotal Trees Pledged: 3,919,508
Supporting actions: Avoided Deforestation, Nursery Development, Data and Technological Tools, Tree Protection through Management, Workforce Development, Environmental Education, Conservation Finance,
Puerto Rico had undergone great forest cover recovery (from 6% to 55%) in the 1950’s, after almost losing 94% of its tree coverage due to extreme agricultural activity early in the twentieth century. However, in the aftermath of hurricanes Irma and María in 2017, we experienced a dramatic change to our landscape and thus, to the ecosystem services provided by forests and trees. The hurricanes obliterated hundreds of thousands of trees, raked surviving trees bare and decimated the island’s once lush forests. Studies from 2007 show that Puerto Rico had over 1.6 billion trees. After the hurricanes, the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory conducted a rapid assessment with the use of satellite images, currently under evaluation, determining a preliminary estimated loss of 23-31 million trees. However, ongoing U.S. Forest Service land plot analysis reveals the estimate can be as high as 144 million trees lost.
Para la Naturaleza is implementing ecosystem restoration strategies to help recover the forested ecosystems in natural protected areas and in over 30 affected communities throughout the islands. The project is designed to educate and engage people in massive reforestation efforts to foster the well-being of ecosystems and communities and it will focus in four main areas. The project design and its activities are in direct alignment with the global mass-scale nature restoration effort of the One Trillion Trees Initiative:
Tree production by improving existing tree nurseries and establishing new ones in schools and communities
Tree planting in our nature reserves, schools and communities
Maintenance and monitoring to ensure optimal tree growth
Capacity building by providing training to volunteers
Para la Naturaleza has increased its production of trees, through the operations of our five tree nurseries located in various regions of the island: San Juan (metro region), Barranquitas (central region), Ponce (south region), Manatí (north region), and Fajardo (east region). Para la Naturaleza’s Reforestation Unit has the sole purpose of conducting and achieving reforestation activities and goals for the organization, with the support of the remaining organizational units, volunteers, and other community partners.
As part of its strategy to plant 100,000 trees annually, PLN is collaborating with numerous public and private partners. Organizations, corporations and communities are coming together to plant, monitor and maintain planted trees. This is in addition to the production, planting and maintenance by the Reforestation Unit.
Instituto Nueva Escuela, C.O.C.O. PR, Northern Arizona University, Caras con Causa, Boys Scouts of America, Amigos del Yunque, Inc., Villa Pesquera Ponce, Foundation for Puerto Rico, Mi Playa Limpia, Conservation Opportunity, Corredor Ecológico del Noreste, YUCAE, Proyecto ENLACE Caño Martin Peña, Centro Zen Rowan, Banco Popular, Arbor Day Foundation, Starbucks, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, PR Department of Natural and Environmental Resources, LandLife, Inc., Reforesta, EcoCulture, Liberty Foundation, Fundación Guayacán, Clinton Foundation, Environmental Defense Fund, Mariel Foundation, Colegio Puertorriqueño de Niñas, First Bank, US Fish and Wildlife Service, L’Oreal Caribe, Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), University of Puerto Rico – Carolina, University of Puerto Rico – Aguadilla, University of Puerto Rico – Mayagüez, University of Puerto Rico - Humacao, Save the Beach – Rincón, Salvemos Playuela, Protectores de Cuencas – Yauco, Urbe a Pie, CRES Inc. – Coalición Restauración de Ecosistemas Marinos
Acres: 10000 / Trees: 2,919,508
Acres: 10000 / Trees: 2,919,508
Para la Naturaleza’s Reforestation initiative is a comprehensive program focused on ecological recovery. It seeks to integrate communities into practices of reforestation to strengthen the island’s biodiversity, protect the hydrographical basins, support its species, and improve the soil’s overall health. Through the program, Para la Naturaleza is responding to immediate and long-term needs with the purpose of recovering the forests of Puerto Rico, to include the following four focus areas: tree production, tree planting, educational programming and reforestation site management.
With a commitment to support the development of healthy and resilient communities PLN will maximize the production capacity of its tree nurseries to plant and grow 100,000 native and endemic trees annually, which are more resistant to natural phenomena such as hurricanes, across the islands of Puerto Rico. This will help recover the forested ecosystems in the natural protected areas and recover/improve green areas in urban wildlife interfaces and affected communities.
This program has continued to broaden in scope and includes educational components, volunteer opportunities and the development of a Spanish language app, on Apple and ios, that allows residents to pledge their commitment to planting trees. Workshops will also take place locally at the organization’s six visitor centers throughout the island.
PLN is investing +/- $1.8 million to produce and plant 100,000 annually. In addition, we are engaging a volunteer corps on reforestation efforts as well as working with corporations, government agencies and other NGOS to steward environmental sustainability.
Additional financial resources would help expand our operations and allocate broader resources to reach a substantial reforestation of 1 million trees in Puerto Rico. Our goal is to be able to accelerate this pace and reach our 1 million trees planted rapidly.