The project, titled Co-forest, brings communities of individuals and organisations together to preserve land and plant new woodland, contributing to biodiversity, creating new natural habitats for wildlife, and reducing carbon in the atmosphere.
The inaugural Co-forest project will begin planting this year in the Bath and Bristol area, and you can get involved.
To get involved in this inaugural Co-forest project – Co-Forest:Acorn – individuals and organisations can sponsor up to an acre of land each. A number of groups have already pledged support to Co-forest:Acorn – and an initial sum of £150,000 has been met which will ensure planting can happen.
The project team is inviting further investment from local businesses and from the general public with the ultimate hope of raising £1m. If successful, this would enable an excess of 50,000 trees to be planted, making this the largest tree-planting initiative in the region.
Storm CEO and Co-forest founder, David Kelly, explains: “I’m sure most people are concerned about the climate and ecological crises we’re facing, and looking for ways to make a positive change in our lives.
“My own motivation to launch Co-forest came from seeing how much my four-year-old daughter enjoys the woodlands we visit, and how concerned her generation are about the future of the planet. She is very engaged in her natural surroundings and speaks to my wife and me about recycling and looking after the planet. Co-forest is a great way to create a legacy for all of our children and help future-proof our planet for generations to come.
Whatever your motivation, there is room for you in Co-forest:Acorn – so if you’re celebrating a birthday, the birth of a child, commemorating a family member or marking a special occasion, why not adopt a section of forest. You can even get involved in planting the forest if you’d like, and name your area of forest on the Co-forest:Acorn map.
David said: We’re being very careful about where we plant trees – it is essential we put the right trees in the right place. We are working closely with The Woodland Trust, and local community interest company Ecowild, to ensure the land purchased is suitable for tree planting, and the trees planted are native and appropriate for the land, make a positive contribution to local biodiversity, and where possible extend or create ecological corridors.”
And Co-forest is not limited to a single project in the Bath and Bristol area – it has now been spun out as a separate company to allow the creation of a blueprint for similar projects across the nation – the founders envisage groups of companies and individuals coming together in towns around Britain to preserve land and plant new woodland or forestry.
David adds: “Co-forest forests will be as much about the ecological impact as carbon offsetting – something that has not always been the case with other reforestation projects available currently. We want to create a blueprint for groups of people to work together, alongside experts, to fund the planting of trees, but with the focus being on getting the right mix of native trees, planted on suitable land, and where possible to join up ecological corridors and boost biodiversity.
“We hope that our inaugural forest near Bath and Bristol will highlight what can be achieved when we work together, and that it is then replicated by groups across the UK.”
Further information about Co-forest, the inaugural Co-forest: Acorn, and details of how to get involved can be found on the Co-forest website.