What did we do with successes booked a decade ago ?

Photo credit: WVC 1990-07 Fraternisation 08

Arbolle, Prov. Passoré, Burkina Faso: Bois de la Fraternisation

Splendid growth of Acacia nilotica, planted in 1988, already 3 m high in 1990

Originally published at:

https://desertification.wordpress.com/2007/03/21/successful-reforestation-in-burkina-faso-reboisement-reussi-au-burkina-faso/

 

Successful reforestation in Burkina Faso / Reboisement réussi au Burkina Faso

Martin H. STAPLE’s comment

office@staple.at

Stumbled across this page entirely by chance this evening (20.03.2007) while searching for something else – what a brilliant project! What has the response of the local people and the authorities been? Have there been no problems with people foraging for firewood, or with grazing goats etc.?
Success stories like this deserve to be made much more well-known.

Thanks, Martin, for this nice comment. Referring to a former message on this blog (November 19, 2006), you recognized the remarkable success of our reforestation project. A splendid young wood was developed in a very short period and this without any irrigation, only rainfed. How was this possible ? Well, there is no secret at it! We only applied our soil conditioner TerraCottem (www.terracottem.com) at the beginning of the rainy season way back in 1988, planted different species of tree seedlings from a local nursery and left it to the annual rain to keep the roots moistened enough for continuous growth (also in the 9 months of dry season, mainly through capillary water !). The rain was stocked every year thereafter in TerraCottem’s water absorbent polymers, the moistened soil was continuously setting free more nutrients (mineralisation) and the enhancing organic matter stimulates microbiological activities. We registered a gradual invasion of local herbaceous and woody plant species without any additional seeding or planting, followed by the appearance of an amazing number of animals (insects, birds, reptiles, mammals). Nature responded positively !

Looking back, we noticed that we restored nature with ONE SINGLE ACTION : planting young trees with TerraCottem !

Now, let me come back to your questions : “What has the response of the local people and the authorities been? Have there been no problems with people foraging for firewood, or with grazing goats etc.?”.

Well, Martin, can’t you guess the answers ?

The local people reacted splendidly : they appreciated the reappearance of the former wood (which they had destroyed themselves when collecting firewood !) and they were very happy when we told them 10 years after plantation that now they could even install very small gardens (a few square meter each) here and there in the shade of the trees. You had to see the stars in their eyes !

As for the authorities, they got a report and a Power Point Presentation of the results. We were congratulated with “the nice initiative” and they “would see what they could do about it“.

The local people, having their little fields under the canopies, fully respect the newly formed young wood. They certainly do not allow the cattle to penetrate in the wood (protection of their gardens !).

And the little wood itself ? It is since then expanding by dispersal of seeds from the magnificent trees.

Thanks again, Martin, for your conclusion : “ Success stories like this deserve to be made much more well-known.” With your comment, you contributed to this. After so many years we still hope that authorities, international or national organizations, NGOs or other aid organizations will have the same feeling as yours : this example merits to be multiplied at a very large scale, making successful reforestation as simple as can be.

That day will come !

Willem

1988-12 Fraternisation 03
Photo WVC 1988-12 Bois de la Fraternisation 03 : Arbollle (Passoré Province, Burkina Faso) – 4 months after planting tree seedlings with TerraCottem, the team of the University of Ghent-Belgium (Patrick VERVALCKE and Julien DE KEYSER) measure the young trees to study the optimal dosage of the soil conditioner. —————-1988-12 : Arbollle (Passoré Province, Burkina Faso) – 4 mois après la plantation des jeunes pieds d’arbre avec le TerraCottem, l’équipe de Université de Gand-Belgique (Patrick VERVALCKE et Julien DE KEYSER) mesurent les jeunes arbres pour étudier le dosage optimal du conditionneur de sol.

 

1998-12 Fraternisation 10
Photo WVC 1998-12 Bois de la Fraternisation 10 – 1998-12 : Arbollle (Passoré Province, Burkina Faso) – 10 years later a magnificent young is formed without any irrigation and the only thing we did was planting tree seedlings with TerraCottem. Why should other reforestation projects not set up a test with it? ———— 1998-12 : Arbollle (Passoré Province, Burkina Faso) – 10 ans après, un jeune bois magnifique a été formé sans aucune irrigation et la seule chose que nous avons fait, c’est de planter les jeunes pieds d’arbre avec du TerraCottem. Pourquoi les autres projets de reboisement n’organiseraient-ils pas un test avec ce produit belge?

 

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A $2 billion project – In 2007 = 7.775 km to go – In 2015= 150 km done. About 273.000.000 results on Google. And now?

greatgreenwall_0

 

African countries are building a “Great Green Wall” to beat back the Sahara desert

Eleven African countries are moving ahead with an ambitious pan-African effort in the Sahel-Saharan region of the continent to protect arable land from the encroaching Sahara desert—by planting trees.

The countries—Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Sudan, Chad, Niger, Nigeria, Mali, Burkina Faso, Mauritania, and Senegal—came together in 2007 to execute the $2 billion dollar project to arrest the creeping desertification in the region. The 15 kilometers (9 miles) wide and 7,775 kilometers (4,831 miles) long tree wall will stretch all the way from Senegal in west Africa to Djibouti in the east.

Desertification is a growing problem in sub-Saharan Africa. Estimates suggest that 40% of the region’s land has been impacted, exposing over 500 million people to devastating shifts in their environment and general livelihoods. These have included land erosion and decreasing rains that have subsequently crippled agriculture, exposed communities to health risks that come with increasing sandstorms and food shortages. The resulting insecurity has also contributed to the rise in extremism in parts of West Africa, some analysts contend.

The original idea for the tree wall was first proposed by former Nigerian president Olusegun Obasanjo in 2005 and the African Union took it up in 2007. The World Bank helped co-finance it and the UN has been a supporter. At the recently concluded climate change summit in Paris, French president François Hollande promised that his government will offer up to €1 billion a year by 2020 to the anti-desertification effort, including the Green Wall project.

Read the full article: Quartz Africa

Has the reforestation effort done little to abate China’s great yellow dust storms ?

China’s Reforestation Programs:
Big Success or Just an Illusion?

China has undertaken ambitious reforestation initiatives that have increased its forest cover dramatically in the last decade. But scientists are now raising questions about just how effective these grand projects will turn out to be.

 Jon R. Luoma, a contributing editor at Audubon, has written about environmental and science topics for The New York Times, and for such magazines as National Geographic and Discover - http://e360.yale.edu/images/features/jon_luoma_yale_e360.jpg

Jon R. Luoma, a contributing editor at Audubon, has written about environmental and science topics for The New York Times, and for such magazines as National Geographic and Discover – http://e360.yale.edu/images/features/jon_luoma_yale_e360.jpg

by jon r. luoma

EXCERPT

In China, major environmental degradation caused by deforestation was apparent even 2,000 years ago, when the great waterway once simply called “The River” was visibly transformed. Tree-felling all along the river’s banks wiped out root systems that held erosion in check, allowing tons of sediments to spread their stains into what has been known ever since as the Yellow River.

In the years after World War II, with its population booming and a massive drive to industrialize in full swing, China became an epicenter of world deforestation, clearing land wholesale for purposes that ranged from growing more food to fueling furnaces for smelting steel. More recently, however, the nation appeared to be reversing that trend, largely with massive campaigns to plant trees. In the first decade of the new millennium, China annually increased its forest cover by 11,500 square miles, an area the size of Massachusetts, according to a 2011 report from the United Nations.

But scientists and conservation groups are beginning to voice concerns about the long-term viability of significant aspects of China’s reforestation push. Of greatest concern is the planting of large swaths of non-native tree species, many of which perish because their water needs are too great for the arid regions in which they are planted. China also is cultivating large monoculture plantations that harbor little biodiversity.

Some international conservation groups, working with Chinese partners, have launched small-scale reforestation and grassland projects using native species, but it remains to be seen whether these ventures can help usher in a new era of more ecologically sound reforestation in China.

Read the full article: Environment 360

ONCE UPON A TIME IN 2002: CBD MAGAZINE

Photo credit: WVC 1994-07 – Bois de la Fraternisation in Arbolle (Burkina Faso),

Belgian TC-Dialogue with Canadian Cooperation

Happy to remind me of an former publication in the CBD Magazine 2002

by Prof. Dr. Willem Van Cotthem (Belgium)

CBD-2002_01

Arbolle 1988-07 at the start of the project (Photo credit - WVC)
Arbolle 1988-07 at the start of the project (Photo credit – WVC)

CBD-2002_02

Click on the text to enlarge the size

Arbolle 1990-07 - Young wood developing thanks to soil conditioner TerraCottem
Arbolle 1990-07 – Young wood developing thanks to soil conditioner TerraCottem
Arbolle 1998-12 : Ten years after plantation with TerraCottem soil conditioner, the Bois de la Fraternisation (Wood of Fraternization) is a remarkable success. Reforestation at its best. (Photo credit WVC)
Arbolle 1998-12 : Ten years after plantation with TerraCottem soil conditioner, the Bois de la Fraternisation (Wood of Fraternization) is a remarkable success. Reforestation at its best.
(Photo credit WVC)

Great Green Wall in China ? (Google / The Washington Post)

Read at : Google Alerts – desertification

http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/let-a-billion-trees-bloom-can-a-great-green-wall-of-trees-stop-chinas-spreading-desert/2013/11/22/12908e0e-2d13-11e3-b139-029811dbb57f_story.html

Let a billion trees bloom: Can a great green wall of trees stop China’s spreading desert?

By

Kubuqi Desert, Inner Mongolia, China —We start walking up ridges as high as 10 staircases, slipping as the grains of sand tumble underfoot, grabbing a hand to keep from falling, pushing to get to the top of the next dune to see the sea of sand undulating in the distance.

“We are on the front line of a huge Chinese Dust Bowl advancing east,” says former South Korean ambassador to China Byong Hyon Kwon, an activist in the global fight against deserts on the move.

He is leading a group of volunteers across 21 / 2 miles of desert to a “green wall” of recently planted trees and shrubs aimed at blocking the march of sand and restoring the land. As recently as 50 years ago, this was grassland, Kwon says. People lived here and raised sheep.

But now the Kubuqi Desert is sucking away life. Windstorms threaten the air 800 miles away in Beijing and send plumes all the way across the Pacific to the West Coast of the United States.

Kwon founded Future Forest, a nonprofit organization, to combat desertification in 2001. As ambassador to China from 1998 to 2001, he had experienced firsthand the sandstorms known as the Yellow Dragon, which thicken the skies over Beijing with dust and send people with asthmatic lungs and weak hearts to the hospital. He became convinced then that if action weren’t taken, the march of sand would threaten the viability of the Asian continent.

(continued)

Re-planting efforts in Zimbabwe (Google / The Standard)

Read at : Google Alert – desertification

http://www.thestandard.co.zw/component/content/article/67-environment/35185-lets-complement-re-planting-efforts.htmlLet’s complement re-planting effortsBy Chipo Masara

With the wanton, thoughtless and indiscriminate cutting down of trees still very much going on; the country is fast facing desertification. But because organisations like Forestry Commission, Friends of the Environment and Environment Africa have evidently been working tirelessly to try and reverse the damage; maybe all is not quite lost yet.

With the 2011/2012 tree planting season having clearly come to an end, I will endeavour to find out from those organisations that were most noticeable in attempts to restore the country’s lost forests through vigorous tree-planting campaigns how much their efforts have yielded.

It would also be important to find out, considering that people still continue to exhibit destructive traits, how these organisations plan to preserve the progress made.

A few months ago, we carried a story of the invasion of the Chiredzi Conservancy, a move that has not only put in grave danger the lives of the animals, but has now seen very little being left of the forests that previously covered the area.

More recent was the story this paper covered in the April 29-May 5 issue, entitled Zanu PF land invaders threaten scenic Vumba, in which the writer reported of how some settlers were being “accused of destroying the scenic Eastern Highlands by indiscriminately cutting down indigenous and exotic trees and wanton hunting of wild animals.”

It is the bringing down of trees for personal gain, exacerbating land degradation, that forms the subject of this instalment. As the situation stands, there has developed a major dependency on trees to cater for many people’s energy needs, no thanks to the now very erratic power supplies from the Zesa.

Tobacco farmers, most of who have admitted their operations are still too small-scale for them to afford the use of coal in curing their crop, have also been found to be major culprits in the destruction of trees.

But in spite of the gloomy picture painted above, there are people who are making an awesome effort to try to reverse the situation, albeit facing a lot of resistance.

(continued)