Reforestation: Changing methods to scale up

June 23, 2023

On June 23, 2023, an article entitled "To meet the colossal challenges of reforestation, the world can no longer rely on traditional methods" was published in Le Monde. It was signed by Prof. Robin Duponnois, director of research at IRD since 2002 and an internationally recognized specialist in soil microbiology.

For the past two years, MORFO has been working closely with Prof. Duponnois and his team atIRD to improve the quality of our plantation capsules. This collaboration aims to increase the effectiveness of reforestation efforts by optimizing the composition and properties of these capsules.

Following the results of our first research collaboration, we have signed a second research collaboration in January 2023. This program will last 24 months and will include a new collaboration with Robin and IRD, as well as with the LASEM laboratory of the University of Sao Carlos in Brazil, a reference in forest restoration in Brazil. By bringing together multidisciplinary teams from different regions, this collaboration aims to foster the exchange of knowledge, harness diverse perspectives and advance the field of reforestation science.

To find out more about our collaborations, follow this link: R&D: WHY AND HOW WE WORK WITH SPECIALIZED LABORATORIES.

Reforestation is a major global challenge in the face of climate change and declining biodiversity. The current rate of replanting falls far short of the United Nations target of restoring 80 million hectares of forest every year. The traditional method of raising seedlings in nurseries and transplanting them has proved laborious and ineffective in the long term, often leading to ecological disasters when exotic species are introduced. However, by taking into account the biochemistry that occurs between trees, neighbouring plants and the soil through the mycorrhizal system, and using indigenous knowledge, science and technology, a new approach to reforestation can be developed. This includes maximizing the potential of ecological engineering and using innovative methods such as drone technology for large-scale reforestation efforts.

To respond to the urgency of reforestation, it is crucial to adopt an agroecological approach that takes into account the complex interactions between plants, microorganisms and soil. By recognizing the importance of diverse plant cover and native species, we can restore ecological balance and soil fertility. Innovative technologies such as drones can help analyze and reforest difficult terrain, speeding up the planting process and enabling effective monitoring. To achieve ambitious reforestation targets and combat climate change, it is essential that public and private players embrace these new opportunities and work together towards a sustainable future.

Click here to read the full article.

Image source: Quang Nguyen Vinh
Environmental Content Manager
Lorie Louque
- Paris, France

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