Startup Is Using Geo-Tagging And Blockchain To Fight Deforestation In Africa

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deforestation
Every year, about 15 billion trees are cut down globally, and across Africa, deforestation rates have surpassed the global annual average of 0.8 percent. Photo by Sharad Bhat on Unsplash

Every year, about 15 billion trees are cut down globally, and across Africa, deforestation rates have surpassed the global annual average of 0.8 percent.

Forests in West and East Africa, where conservation efforts are not matching deforestation activities, have undergone almost complete decline between the 1900s and 2017, according to a comparison of reconstructed African forests by a team of ecology and evolutionary biology scientists at Yale University.

One reason for this is that people in rural areas in Africa still depend on wood from felled trees for their cooking, according to the Africa Energy Outlook 2019 report.

“My roots in Africa”

Story from Philadelphia Tribune. Story by Paul Adepoju.

An African startup is trying to be a part of the solution to this deforestation crisis. The Most Influential People of African Descent (MIPAD), a group working to bridge the gap between Africans in the diaspora and those living on the continent, wants people to have roots in Africa — literally.

Through a social impact initiative, the group wants to plant and assign more than 200 million trees across Africa by 2024 before the end of the U.N. International Decade for People of African Descent.

From any part of the world, the My Roots in Africa Project makes it possible for anyone to place a request to have a tree named, planted or gifted in honor of themselves or anyone they love.

“My Roots in Africa is … Uber for trees, connecting local communities impacted by pollution or deforestation with global citizens looking to plant their roots in Africa,” said Kamil Olufowobi, MIPAD’s founder and CEO.

“It presents an opportunity where Africa wins, the diaspora wins, and all of humanity wins. It supports the diaspora to reduce their barrier of entry to Africa.”

The initiative will be officially launched in February on the sidelines of the African Union Summit and aims to drive support for the Great Green Wall while also promoting climate action one of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.

Read more at Philadelphia Tribune.