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Over the next three decades, the world needs to plant a billion hectares of forest to keep global warming in check — that’s almost enough to cover the entire U.S.. Between 1990 and 2016, logging, fires, and a rise of predatory beetles destroyed over 130 million hectares of forest. To make matters worse, the end condition of these damaged lands can be unsafe for immediate human intervention
Enter drones. Canada-based Flash Forest deploys aerial drones to “carpet-bomb” a landscape with tree seed pods. These drones can plant trees up to 10 times faster than humans, operate in inaccessible areas, and are 80% cheaper than traditional tree planting methods. The 20-person team plans on planting 10,000 trees weekly in 2022, moving towards their goal of one billion new trees by 2028.
The idea is taking flight in the U.S. as well, with reforestation startup DroneSeed raising a $36 million funding round. They’re currently the only FAA-approved (Federal Aviation Administration) drone company to deploy heavy-lift drones to reforest after wildfires, especially since these drones require military precision. If a seed is fired even a few inches off, it won’t hit hospitable soil or may grow too close to other seeds to survive.
🎬 Take Action
Want to help reforestation efforts? Here’s a 2021 list of nine charities worth supporting, all working towards restoring the world’s lost forest.
- Washington Post (Where we found this story) 11 days old | 8 minutes long
- sUAS News More about DroneSeed 1 month old | 6 minutes long
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Drones planting seeds? What a tree-mendous idea!
Art Credit: ascii.co.uk