BUSH NOTE: STOP THE KILLING
We’re talking not only about the crisis facing wildlife especially our rhino and elephant but also the loss of habitat through greed and corruption around illegal logging in Africa. In Mozambique alone the Environmental Intelligence Agency revealed that 93% of logging in Mozambique is illegal and the key driver of forest crime being the ongoing demand from China. Just from what we’ve seen the days are numbered for the great hardwood trees of Mozambique. We’re not naïve – we understand that people need to live and that charcoal and timber is a necessary resource for people BUT it’s out of hand.
The deforestation in countries like Malawi is staggering… But in keeping with our expedition’s strapline of Hope Crosses Any Terrain, we do find hope. Wilderness Safaris’ Central Africa Roots to Fruits programme is one of these – run by ex-forestry officer Mr Master Banda they timelessly supply schools and clubs with tree seedlings (more than 200,000 to date). ‘The secret,’ says Mr Banda, ‘is that we use the initiative of one third of the seedlings being fast-growing fruit which can be planted close to the homesteads.’ We visit a nearby school – the excited kids gather around, the even have their own tree clubs and show us how they make liquid fertilizer for their trees. ‘We even get seedlings to take home,’ says 12-year old Wiseman Qoto with a big grin. We urge our fellow travellers who adventure through these countries to try and support tree-planting initiatives. We did and hopefully will help off-set some of our Landies’s carbon emissions as we continue to zigzagging North towards Ethiopia.
Will keep you posted.