With reference to the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization, a forest of 129 hectares have been lost due to deforestation since 1990, this is an area almost equivalent to the size of South Africa. Area size of the country Panama is being stray every year.

A countless number of plants and animals are losing their habitats every day. This is solely the effects of greenhouse gas emissions that come from deforestation.

A Brazilian photographer Sebastião Salgado and his wife Lélia Deluiz Wanick have shown initiation and passion by beginning the process of reforestation with just a small group of people.

Image credits: Ricaro Beliel

Salgado is a known figure who has won an overriding number of awards in photojournalism and has published more than half a dozen of books. After returning home to Brazil from documenting the ferocity of the Rwandan genocide. Salgado was flattened and shocked to see the devoid wildlife.

Image credits: Sebastiao Salgado

“The land was as sick as I was – everything was destroyed,” Salgado said in The Guardian back in 2015. “Only about 0.5% of the land was covered in trees. Then my wife had a fabulous idea to replant this forest. And when we began to do that, then all the insects and birds and fish returned and, thanks to this increase of the trees I, too, was reborn – this was the most important moment.”

Salgado and his wife Lélia along with the support from Instituto Terra, a small organization. Had planted approximately 4 million saplings has rehabilitated the forest from the dead.

Image credits: institutoterra

“Perhaps we have a solution,” Salgado said. “There is a single being which can transform CO2 to oxygen, which is the tree. We need to replant the forest. You need forest with native trees, and you need to gather the seeds in the same region you plant them or the serpents and the termites won’t come. And if you plant forests that don’t belong, the animals don’t come there and the forest is silent.”

Image credits: institutoterra

After which, 293 species of plants, 172 species of birds, 33 species of mammals, 15 species of reptiles and 15 species of amphibians are to be found in the forest. An entire ecosystem had been rebuilt from ground.

Image credits: institutoterra
Image credits: Sebastião Salgado

Salgado further explained that “We need to listen to the words of the people on the land. Nature is the earth and it is other beings and if we don’t have some kind of spiritual return to our planet, I fear that we will be compromised.”

Image credits: Weverson Rocio
Image credits: Sebastião Salgado

This project has inspired millions of people to start thinking about the mother nature, for how quickly our environment could recover giving it the right kind of treatment and attention.

Image credits: YASUYOSHI CHIBA
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