Cool Earth celebrates its fifth birthday in May and, thanks to contributions from Printware customers, the last year has seen some huge successes. In the coming year, Cool Earth is expanding its existing projects and launching new ones, in South America and Papua New Guinea.
Papua New Guinea is home to the largest remaining rain forest in the Asia Pacific region and Cool Earth is committed to protecting 350,000 trees, which will prevent 4 million tonnes of CO2 emissions and help to ensure the survival of 110 plant and 22 animal species. A ten-year forest protection plan will also support the communities within the rain forests, helping them work towards generating sustainable income whilst protecting the forest and ensuring their cultural identity.
Cool Earth has also been working with the Aguaruna-Huambisa, one of Peru's largest indigenous tribes, based in the North of the country. Cool Earth's first priority was to install a solar powered radio network so that every village could have a say in the project, which aims to preserve the Aguaruna's rain forest home, whilst respecting and honouring their cultural traditions.
The people of the Ashaninka region in Peru have been working with Cool Earth for some time and are now opening a chocolate shop in the heart of the forest. Villagers will be able to receive a fair price for their cocoa and store the beans before shipment to chocolate manufacturers. By storing the cocoa beans, the Ashaninka producers are able to wait until they have enough for a full shipment before selling them on, to ensure the best possible price.
The cocoa beans are grown beneath the rain forest canopy in a highly sustainable way, helping the local communities to prevent logging and maintain their self sufficiency. Many people decided to sponsor a cacao tree with Cool Earth for Easter this year, instead of buying an Easter egg. You can now buy Cool Earth coffee too so the ways in which you can help support rain forest communities is growing all the time.
Matthew Owen, Director of Cool Earth, has met with the World Bank, Prince's Rainforest Trust and the Prime Minister's policy unit to discuss ways in which community led projects can be better supported and additional funds can be released for rain forest protection. Study after study has shown that the conservation method pioneered by Cool Earth is the most effective way to prevent logging and reduce carbon dioxide emissions.
Your continued support for this vital work is invaluable and makes a real difference to people's lives and the health of our planet:
'I'm just sending you and everyone at Printware a big thank you.. We really appreciate the hard work you put in promoting saving trees and all that energy certainly paid off as Cool Earth is now protecting 215,000 acres of rainforest,' says Jemma Woodman, Head of Communications and Fundraising at Cool Earth.
If you'd like to find out more about Cool Earth and the many different ways in which you can get involved, please visit www.coolearth.org
by Anthony Morgan