Nearly 59 million hectares of forests – an area larger than mainland France– has regrown since 2000, according to new analysis from Trillion Trees. This area of forest has the potential to store the equivalent of 5.9 Gt of CO2e – more than the annual emissions of the United States1.
The study was designed to help inform forest restoration plans worldwide, giving a picture of the areas where focusing restoration efforts could be most beneficial. It was part of a two-year research project, which involved examining more than 30 years’ worth of satellite imaging data and surveying experts with on-the-ground knowledge of more than 100 sites in 29 different countries.
The research points to the Atlantic Forest in Brazil as one of the success stories for regeneration, where an estimated 4.2 million hectares – an area roughly the size of the Netherlands – has regrown since 2000, through a combination of planned projects to restore the forest, more responsible industry practices and other factors including migration trend towards cities.
In the boreal forests of Mongolia’s northern wilderness, the study suggests that 1.2 million hectares of forest have regenerated in the last 20 years, in part thanks to the work of Trillion Trees partner WWF, and increased emphasis from the Mongolian government on protected areas. Other regeneration hotspots include central Africa and the boreal forests of Canada.