URGENT APPEAL Help rural communities in Indonesia by offsetting your carbon footprint

We are seeking urgent help supporting our vital reforestation work during the COVID-19 pandemic seeking to address biodiversity loss, poverty and climate change. With 30,000 saplings in our nurseries in remote Sulawesi ready to be planted into the nearby conservation forest and planting needing to happen before the end of wet season, the race is on to ensure all the efforts of the local communities involved so far isn’t wasted.

With Indonesia still closed to foreign visitors and their COVID-19 vaccination programme only just starting, it is looking likely that for a second year running the village communities with which Operation Wallacea have worked for the last 25 years will not have the vital income and employment they would usually receive from the annual survey programmes. In 2020, to get some much needed money into the communities and as part of our long-term carbon offsetting efforts, Operation Wallacea funded the development of tree nurseries where local people collected seeds and seedlings from the adjacent forests. This has led to 30,000 seedlings currently spread between three separate nurseries, which have now reached 1 – 1.5m in height and are ready to be planted in an area of conservation forest that has been severely damaged by illegal logging.

We are now looking for urgent help to fund the next phase of this forest restoration project which will employ a large number of people from the villages concerned. Planting trees at this height during the wet season means they have a much greater chance of survival than for normal tree planting schemes in which the trees are often planted very close together when they are just tiny seedlings, which means they need thinning out as they grow. But the end to wet season is fast approaching and so we are in a race against time to ensure the potential of these seedlings for reforestation isn’t lost for ever.

Transparency is important to us – this is not a scheme where you don’t know where the trees you funded are being planted. The volunteers on our expeditions in 2022 and beyond will see the trees that have been planted under this scheme for themselves. Most importantly, the funds for this scheme will be used to support wages for village communities in rural Sulawesi during these difficult times caused by the pandemic. 

By donating to this project, you can offset your personal carbon footprint.  You can calculate your footprint from travel, food, power usage, and heating by going to the WWF carbon footprint calculator. Once you have an estimate for your annual carbon footprint in tonnes, if you donate US$10 (£7.70) for each tonne you wish to offset, we will plant two trees. Over the next 20 years these trees will offset your emissions for the year! You don’t have to offset all your emissions – any help you can give will be useful for these communities.

We hope you will be able to help and thank you for your support. If you would like to, you can find a link to our Virgin Money Giving profile at the top of this page.