As a pillar of EARTHDAY.ORG’s work, The Canopy Project™ reforests areas in dire need of rehabilitation, protects biodiverse habitats around the world, and strengthens communities at risk from climate change and environmental degradation. This year, The Canopy Project has set an ambitious goal of 10,000,000 tree plantings and commitments throughout 2022. As part of its annual theme to Invest in Our Planet, EARTHDAY.ORG and its partners continue to invest in reforestation.
EARTHDAY.ORG has partnered with Crystal International Group Limited to grow 100,000 mangroves along the villages of Banishanta union in the Khulna division of Bangladesh. The area is a prime spot for planting because of its proximity to the Sundarbans, the largest mangrove forest in the world, and the benefits for the locals are substantial. Over 21,000 mangroves have already been planted as part of the project, which spans 10 hectares of land that has been fenced off for both stability and to prevent any accidental interference. Planting will be finished at the end of August 2022.
Planted species are native to the region (both salt and flood tolerant) and perfect for binding soil to embankments allowing more launch sites for the main form of transportation, boats. While anchoring to the embankment the mangroves collect silt flowing down the river, strengthening the embankment and forming a nursery for numerous crab, fish, and shrimp species that can be caught and sold by local fishermen. These embankments also act as barriers against severe weather events that are unfortunately becoming more prevalent in these regions.
“Benefits of mangroves go beyond fish nursery and embankment securement. Mangroves sequester roughly two to four times the amount of carbon when compared to a mature tropical forest, helping to improve air quality and lessen the environmental footprint of those living in the area,” said Kathleen Rogers, President of EARTHDAY.ORG, who added “we are happy to partner with a company like Crystal International Group Limited, one of the largest pioneering global apparel manufacturers, that is leading sustainable clothing manufacturing.”
To commemorate this large-scale planting event a celebration was held on July 26, 2022, World Mangrove Day. The celebration included the planting of 600 mangrove saplings during low tide with the participation of approximately 100 individuals including EARTHDAY.ORG representatives, local planting partners, and the Banishanta union community that will most benefit from the planting site. Photos available here.
“Tree planting has long been our environmental ambition, in which it’s one of the indicators of our Global 5-year Sustainability Targets. We recognise the ecological importance of mangrove ecosystems in providing essential habitat for thousands of species. We are delighted to collaborate with EARTHDAY.ORG to grow mangroves and support biodiversity, in tackling climate change and deforestation,” said Catherine Chiu, Vice President, Global Sustainability of Crystal International. Tree planting is one of the continuous sustainable foci of Crystal International Group Limited, the Group has planted nearly 3 million trees in the past 15 years.
For more information on The Canopy Project, a map of planting locations, and how to get involved, please visit: https://www.earthday.org/campaign/the-canopy-project/