BLOG: People, Forests, Wales and the Planet

Posted on May 14, 2021 by

Jenny Carew recently started volunteering with Llais y Goedwig “I wanted to get involved in a project which supports woodlands here in Wales, so they can thrive in the future. Now more than ever, we understand the importance of getting out in to nature, so we must do what we can do make sure our woodlands prosper in the future”. In March Jenny took part in the online event People, Forests, Wales and the Planet on the UN’s International Day of Forests. Here she shares her thoughts on community woodlands and the climate crisis.

 

I recently joined an online event as part of Llais y Goedwig, to join the discussion on the important role trees and woodlands play in the fight against climate change.

Recently, Llais y Goedwig partnered with the WOW Film Festival (Wales One World), a small festival in Wales, which has been running for 20 years.

Today we were discussing ‘The Life of Trees’, a film by Peter Wohlleben, and wider issues around sustainability in our woodlands, the climate emergency and how our actions in Wales affect issues around the world.

It was great to see such a global effort, key speakers included Matias Perez from Peru (who works on a program in Peru to protect the Wampi community) Barbara Davies Quy, Head of Programmes, from the Size of Wales and of course David Williams, a board member from from Llais y Goedwig.

I could talk for hours about this! But – to keep it short and snappy, here are some key points which I took away from the event:
How can our actions in Wales help towards the fight in the global climate crisis?

  • Support local forests. As we know, trees are the lungs of the earth. Whether you can plant a tree, or volunteer to join a group to protect community woodland – no effort is too little! We can all get involved. Why not look at upcoming events in Wales. There are events in every corner of the country – so find one near you here.
  • Support global forests. You may think that your consumer choices don’t make a difference but they do. Whether you buy chocolate, soy milk, coffee or animal feed, many of these key ingredients are from South America. The creation of agricultural products (also including timber and beef) account for 73% of all deforestation in the tropics. According to The Size Of Wales, on average, an area of one rugby pitch is lost every 2 seconds…Try and buy Fairtrade if you can, as you know land hasn’t been deforested in order to create these products.
  • Wales should promote and try to secure more ethical trade deals and monitor our deforestation footprint.
  • Farmers and animal feed -where were the crops for grain grown? Is it sustainable? Have woodlands been destroyed to grow these crops? Perhaps we should promote pasture grazing over feed, as this can reduce the amount of hard feed required, and cuts air miles too! We must also consider the cost to the farmer, though – is it viable for them to make this shift? Is there funding for this in the future?
  • Protect and plant! Before we plant new trees, we must look after older woodlands and forests we already have. This links back to volunteering and getting involved to protect your local woodland.

I’m continuing to learn as I hear more about this subject, and it reinforces all of the environmental work so many of us are already doing around Wales and beyond.

So, if you take anything from this, why not discover a local woodland group or find out how you can protect the woodland around your home.

Let’s look after this planet!

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