We all know the perils of global warming and climate change. In fact, whether we realize it or not, we’re all facing it.
And whether one believes it o not, global warming is a serious threat created by our own self.
We think about how is it possible for just one person to tackle global warming. It’s a global epidemic and we think just one or two people don’t really make a lot of difference.
To tell you the truth, it actually is just one or two people making the difference. And a Brazilian photographer and his wife are the living proof of it.
Sebastião Salgado is a renowned photographer from Brazil. He has won almost every award there is in photojournalism and also published about half-dozen books.
In 1990, Salgado was appointed to capture the aftermath of the horrific barbarity of the Rwandan genocide.
This left him mentally drained and physically and emotionally exhausted. So, he decided to return back to his home and surround himself with nature.
Before leaving, Minas Gerais, the area he lived in was covered in the thick and lush tropical rainforest for miles.
But, to his surprise, the once beautiful and lush forest was now empty and barren without a sign of life.
This worsened his spirits and left him more in the dark. But then his wife Lélia Deluiz Wanick Salgado had a brilliant idea of bringing the barren land to its former glory.
Only about 0.5% of the land was covered in trees. So, Lélia decided to replant the forest. And together, they started planting saplings hoping to hear the birds chirp once more.
The husband and wife duo together found a small organization called Instituto Terra. And ever since it’s beginning, they’ve planted around 4 million saplings.
Along with the restoration of the forest, wild animals, birds, and insects have also popped up.
You might by know think that it’s easy to restore a forest, just plant thousands of trees and bam! it’s done.
But it’s not that simple. Salgado explains the right way of planting trees to restore the forest the right way.
According to him, “you need forest with native trees, and you need to gather the seeds in the same region you plant them or the serpents and the termites won’t come. And if you plant forests that don’t belong, the animals don’t come there and the forest is silent.”
Today, after 20 years of continuously planting native plants, the area has remarkably flourished. Not just the greenery, but the wildlife has also returned.
Thanks to Sebastião Salgado and Lélia Deluiz Wanick Salgado, today, there are some 239 species of plants, 33 species of mammals, 172 species of birds, and 15 species of reptiles and amphibians in the area.
Thus, an entire ecosystem is rebuilt from scratch.