New Drone Tackles Deforestation by Planting 100,000 Trees a Day


New Drone Tackles Deforestation by Planting 100,000 Trees a Day

Recently, recreational drones have been gaining popularity in the media. These remote-controlled devices can hover above the Earth and take stunning photos and videos. But one company has found an unconventional purpose for their drone: they are using it to combat deforestation. BioCarbon Engineering has pledged to plant 1 billion trees using their new technology.

Deforestation due to industrial agriculture, logging, and overpopulation has increased dramatically over the past several decades. Cutting down the Earth’s trees has a significant impact on our environment. Deforestation jeopardizes biodiversity, disturbs the water cycle, causes soil erosion, and contributes to climate change. BioCarbon Engineering decided to use drones to counteract the effects of deforestation.


How It Works

Firstly, the drone flies over the area to be reforested. It creates a 3D map of the land, and its computer analyzes the maps to design a unique seeding pattern that will maximize the space and ensure a high survival rate. Then, the drone fires out biodegradable seed pods into the ground with great precision. These seed pods are designed to increase germination success. As a result, with barely any manpower needed to plant the trees, laborers can focus their efforts on caring for and monitoring the seedlings.



Why Drones?

Planting thousands of trees requires lots of time, support, and resources. Drones can embark on such large-scale reforestation projects in less time at a fraction of the cost. BioCarbon Engineering’s drone can plant up to 100,000 trees in a single day. But many are skeptical of the new technology. Some wonder if their method will truly be more efficient or successful than traditional reforestation techniques.

Derek Markham, from TreeHugger, explains, “Hand planting of tree seedlings by trained foresters has a fairly high rate of success, as it allows for humans to make the call as to exactly where and how deep to plant the baby trees, whereas shooting tree seeds into the soil seems like it would be prone to high failure rates.” Plus, planting trees is a precious way to connect with nature. While using drones could be an interesting complement to human plantings, it should not entirely replace it.

In September, BioCarbon Engineering will team up with the non-profit, Worldwide International Foundation, in Myanmar, where they will plant 1 million trees over 620 acres. Afterwards, they hope to bring their technology to restore the Amazon rainforest and South African forests. You can learn more about BioCarbon Engineering’s drones here: 

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