Trees for Life make pledge

Conservation charity Trees for Life has announced an ambitious new goal to double its current rate of restoration work in Scotland’s Caledonian Forest, with the establishment of one million more trees by planting and natural regeneration within five years.

The charity’s new Million More Trees campaign is a response to environmental problems including deforestation, climate change and biodiversity loss, but could also bring significant benefits to Scotland’s economy by boosting wildlife tourism.

“Establishing a million new native trees in the next five years represents a significant scaling up of our work. We have set ourselves this challenge as a response to the threats posed by environmental degradation globally and human-induced climate change,” said Alan Watson Featherstone, Trees for Life’s executive director. At the same time it is part of a positive vision of re-establishing world-class wild landscapes rich in wildlife in Scotland.

“With wildlife tourism already generating an estimated £276 million a year for the Scottish economy, it’s clear that restoring the Caledonian Forest and its unique wildlife to an inspiring, spectacular wilderness region of 1,000 square miles could have significant economic as well as environmental benefits for the country.”

In a report published this month, Tourism Intelligence Scotland estimated that every year over one million visits are made to Scotland to view wildlife. In May, Trees for Life reached a milestone with the planting of its millionth tree by acclaimed wildlife cameraman Gordon Buchanan.