Science and technology to grow trees

A triple impact company founded by a former forestry employee, has developed an innovative system that combines science and technology to grow trees and native species in deforested areas.

The project is based on the use of drones, microbially treated seed capsules, satellite images and data analysis to restore forests and grasslands on a large scale, thereby reducing the impacts of climate change and biodiversity loss.

This is Reforest Latam, a startup founded at the end of last year by Damián Rivadeneira and industrial engineer Paula Gianserra, along with a team of scientists and technologists. Its business model is based on providing services to companies, NGOs and governments to fulfill their obligations to restore ecosystems based on science and technology.

Science and technology to regenerate nature

"Our technology combined with the wisdom of nature creates a unique synergy. In the laboratory we grow 'I-seeds', which are capsules containing native seeds treated with microorganisms, to which we then add fungi to improve growth conditions. These seeds are dispersed by drones in areas that are difficult to access."explains Rivadeneira, who previously worked for a logging company specialized in removing tree remains and branches left on the ground much faster than traditional technology after deforestation.

Rivadeneira compared: "In one day, with the help of 400 volunteers, 3,5 hectares can be planted and drones can regenerate 20 hectares of forest"."We also use satellite imagery to measure ecosystem growth in terms of biomass and assess carbon sequestration, so that the project can be financed with carbon credits.", he highlights.

The first pilot test of the system was carried out in 40 hectares of the Sierra San Javier park, property of the National University of Tucumán, Argentina. “This year 44.000 trees will be planted here and next year we plan to plant 1,2 million trees typical of this area of ​​the Yungas”Rivadeneira stated. “We are testing science and technology together with researchers and rangers from Conicet at control stations, on different species and at different altitudes.”Gianserra reported.

To carry out a project, the company has strategic partners such as (for the R&D laboratory); Efficatia, an AgTech, specialized in the technological dispersion of drones; the Forestar Foundation, which has a nursery for native species, the National University of Tucumán and the international platform Restor, dedicated to biomass measurement, evaluation and certification of carbon capture.

The startup's strategic team was completed with Patricia Serrizuela, former director of Endeavor, as a consultant; the engineers and forestry biologist Ignasio Gasparry as scientific director of the project, the biotechnologist and doctor in Biological Sciences Milena Bertani, head of the R&D laboratory. Your mission is "restore 1 million hectares in Latin America by 2030".

"We believe that restoring ecosystems is one of the most effective solutions to combat the climate and environmental crisis we are experiencing. This not only contributes to carbon sequestration, but also contributes to protecting biodiversity, providing ecosystem services, creating green jobs and sustainable development for local communities.s”, Rivadeneira concluded.

Science and Technology

Reforest Latam services include:

  • Evaluation of the current situation of the ecosystem: The company carries out an analysis of the state of the ecosystem to be restored, to determine the plant and animal species that should be planted.
  • Project design: The company develops a restoration plan that includes the plant and animal species to be planted, the number of plants to be planted, the distribution of the plants and the work schedule.
  • Project implementation: The company uses drones and seed bombs to plant plants in the area to be restored.
  • Project monitoring: The company monitors the project to ensure the plants are growing and thriving.
  • Project evaluation: The company evaluates the success of the project, measuring the number of plants that have survived and the impact of the project on the ecosystem.

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