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*Estimated carbon sequestration is 20 kg of CO2e per tree accumulated over five years, based on low estimates of dry and humid tropical growth rates from global restoration databases.

Actual carbon impact of each Priceless Planet Coalition restoration project will be assessed after five years based on data collected throughout the monitoring process.

This summer, field teams in the Amazon prepared 30 hectares in the Xingu watershed to receive seeds and commence planting in the rainy season. Active consultations with landowners were fundamental in defining the area along the river as a priority area, suitable for the “muvuca” direct seeding approach.

In Brazil’s Atlantic forest, partners have prepared soil, selected seedlings and are designing planting techniques in Pau Brasil National Park — an area with great historical and cultural importance as well as tremendous biodiversity. Conservation International has been working for over a decade in this region, and the 16 indigenous villages here support many conservation and restoration projects, including the 25,916 trees that have been planted to date through the work of the Priceless Planet Coalition.

Combatting deforestation while protecting biodiversity

Protecting and restoring the Amazon and the Atlantic forests in Brazil will not only have an enormous impact on climate but will also help to safeguard the greatest biodiversity and freshwater reserves on Earth.

The Amazon has already lost almost 20% of its original forest cover. The Atlantic forest, a biodiversity hotspot, has lost more than 80% of its cover since European colonization. Scientists warn that if deforestation continues, the region can cross a tipping point, resulting in harsh climate impacts across the area and entire country.

In both biomes, forest restoration represents a new and green paradigm of development. Beyond benefitting the climate and environment, forest restoration efforts will engage and directly benefit local communities and promote a local sustainable economy through the restoration chain. To achieve this, various methods will be adapted to different regions and realities with an aim to maximize carbon sequestration, biodiversity and social benefits.

Nature of the terrain

In the Amazon biome, the project will take place in four regions:

  1. Private lands in the Xingu River basin in central Amazon (Mato Grosso and Pará states)
    Originally covered by dense and open ombrophilous forests, this region was extensively deforested for agricultural purpose. The restoration efforts will take place in riparian areas to protect the Xingu River and the people who rely on this river.
  2. Rural settlements in the Endemism Center of Belém in the eastern Amazon (Maranhão state)
    Originally covered by dense ombrophilous forests, this region was extensively deforested for cattle ranching. The restoration efforts will take place in legal reserves, a proportion of land that must have forest cover.
  3. Protected area of the Madeira River basin (RondĂ´nia state)
    Originally covered by open ombrophilous forests.
  4. Protected area in the Atlantic forest biome (Bahia state)
    Originally covered by dense ombrophilous forests. In the above biomes, forests are mostly evergreen tropical forest.

Restoration methods

Tree planting
The planting of seedlings over an area with little or no forest canopy to meet specific goals.

Direct seeding
The active dispersal of seeds (preferably ecologically diverse, native seed mixes) that will allow for natural regeneration to occur, provided the area is protected from disturbances. This is a differentiated category from planting young trees.

Assisted natural regeneration
The exclusion of threats (i.e. grazing, fire, invasive plants) that had previously prevented the natural regrowth of a forested area from seeds already present in the soil, or from natural seed dispersal from nearby trees. This does not include any active tree planting.

Applied nucleation
A form of enrichment planting where trees are planted in groups, clusters or even rows, dispersed throughout an area, to encourage natural regeneration in the matrix between the non-planted areas.

The intentional mixing and cultivation of woody perennial species (trees, shrubs, bamboos) alongside agricultural crops in a way that improves the agricultural productivity and ecological function of a site.

The intentional mixing and cultivation of woody perennial species (trees, shrubs, bamboos) on pasture land where tree cover was absent in a way that improves the agricultural productivity and ecological function of a site for continued use as pasture.

Tree species

More than 150 native tree species and at least 17 native species of sociocultural value for non-timber forest products, including:

  • Ipe (Handroanthus serratifolius)
  • Pequi (Caryocar brasiliense)
  • Cupuaçu (Theobroma grandiflora)
  • Jatoba (Hymenaea courbaril)
  • Pitanga (Eugenia uniflora)
  • Rubber tree (Hevea brasiliensis)