One Man’s Impact: Planting 152 Million Trees in 10 Years

Haidar el Ali has been planting trees since 2009 – and his efforts have been no small feat. What he’s done has produced one of the most historical successes in modern large-scale reforestation. He is responsible for the restoration of an entire Senegalese mangrove swamp.

One Man’s Impact: Planting 152 Million Trees in 10 Years

Forests are known to be one of the most resilient habitats in the world, and they are also one of the most exploited. The scientific community began to encourage tree planting in order to “re-wild” the lost forest ecosystems. Some people, Haidar el Ali being one of them, stepped up, rolled up their sleeves, and produced some remarkable results.

Making an Impact on the Environment

Haidar el Ali was the former Minister of Ecology in Senegal and at 67-years, he was able to bring the citizens together to help him plant 152 million mangrove buds by hand. In turn, it created a beautiful mangrove forest on the coast of Senegal that stretches hundreds of square miles and is now one of the largest of its kind in the world.

Current estimations state that 2.4 billion acres of additional forest cover the earth, and they are responsible for sucking 25% of all carbon that is pumped into the atmosphere. Due to this, trees and mangroves help to filter river mud from entering the sea as well as by absorbing tidal waves and tsunamis. They also provide habitat to near-shore wildlife like birds, insects, fish, reptiles, and monkeys.

One Man’s Impact: Planting 152 Million Trees in 10 Years

Committing to the Goal

The mangrove trees are planted by taking a burgeoning or mangrove leaf and planting the lower third portion of it into the mud. You then take 2 steps and plant another one. Haidar enjoys making a positive impact on the environment by planting these trees, and he takes a lot of satisfaction in doing it. In an interview, he mentions that he is ready to plant these trees every day, every evening, and for the rest of his life.