Luigi Cani is a sensation when it comes to green activism, given his stunt which culminated in planting 100 million seeds in the deforested areas of the Amazon forest.
Being a professional skydiver, Luigi is not new to riskier stunts especially linked to his career, but the recent jump took green activism to new heights. However, it begs the question, what led to the alarming deforestation of the Amazon in the first place? Are there any policies in place to curb it? Luigi’s initiatives make a difference, but will these trees remain intact once they germinate and mature?
Amazon Forest Deforestation Activities
What led to the destruction of the prominent forest? The deforestation speed at the Amazon is alarming and ruthlessly executed by different commercial entities, with an economic gain. Like any forest undergoing this unfortunate process, human beings are always behind it. Agricultural activities, like beef and soy farming, logging, mining, and infrastructural developments are some of the activities that have contributed immensely to the destruction of the Amazon forest.
Commercial greed at the moment cannot be ignored anymore, because the damage has extensively grown, sparking an uproar from the Green Army and environmental advocates. In a world where political policies take precedence when commercial players master how to use political will to their favor, deforestation can easily be performed to benefit powerful entities. Sadly, this is what befell the greatest forest and without immediate action, deforestation can shrink a once-admired forest globally to be an environmental catastrophe.
Efforts to restore the deforested parts of the Amazon have not made a huge impact as such. Despite enforcing protected areas and reserves policies, reafforestation initiatives, and educating the residents on sustainable agriculture, these have not contributed to the desired outcome. Luigi Cani followed this closely and decided that it was time for him to step in and make a difference when needed the most.
In a world where sustainability is taking precedence, forest conservation is crucial now more than ever. Luigi's efforts came timely and served as an inspiration to everyone to take steps, regardless of how small they will cumulatively make the desired changes.
The Journey to 100 Million Trees by Luigi Cani
In January this year, Luigi Cani jumped from a plane flying over the deforested areas of the Amazon forest. His jump was accompanied by a box carrying tree seeds from 27 native trees, amounting to 100 million trees in total.
However, how did Luigi get here exactly? How were the planning and the inspiration behind this noble initiative? Luigi holds the record for skydiving to a tune of 11 skydiving records, the 52-year-old skydiving legend had in mind a different record unrelated to his sport altogether, salvaging the deforested areas of the famous Amazon forest.
The journey to planting 100 million trees took five years of meticulous planning. Five years! That is a lot of commitment, passion, and training which took place during the preparation phase. Acquisition of relevant licenses from the Brazilian authorities, building of a biodegradable box to help distribute the seeds to the desired precision, and perfecting the filming of the moment. Despite the box three test boxes failing, Luigi and the team kept going because the mission ahead was bigger than each one of them and they intended to achieve it by all means necessary.
The D-day came and Luigi and the team were ready to make history. Luigi took the jump, intending to open the box and distribute the seeds correctly and evenly through the deforested areas of the forest.
Luigi stated that;
“I struggled to hold the box. I nearly broke my wrist and fingers. I managed to stabilize myself at about 1,800 meters (6,000 ft) and the seeds were released precisely where we wanted them to be. It was complete ecstasy”
The Efforts Are Paying Off!
Luigi Cani’s jump occurred in January 2023 and the reports which were recently released by the Brazilian government during the United Nations summit in New York in September indicated the following;
- A significant drop in deforestation by 56.8% compared to last year September, which was alarmingly high according to the Brazilian Space Research Agency.
- Despite experiencing a ravaging drought and a prolonged one at the moment, the drop in deforestation is visible and efforts like those of Luigi’s can be attributed to this improvement.
According to the satellite data, Luigi’s seeds as predicted achieved up to 95% germination rate and are expected to grow to an impressive height of 50 meters (165 ft). It is so fulfilling not only to Luigi but to the environmental soldiers, passionate about the preservation of our planet. It is also a realization that to achieve sustainability and to protect the planet, it is a collective responsibility. Luigi might have opened up a box and planted 100 million trees but without upholding policies to protect these trees while preventing further deforestation, all the efforts will amount to nothing!
Here is a parting shot, humans are responsible for the deterioration and depletion of natural resources because they are obsessed with today’s gratification while overlooking the needs of the coming generations. On the flip side, it is also the humans' sole responsibility to make this planet better, to right the wrongs, and to restore normalcy before it is too late to do so.
Header image and Featured image by @Luigi Cani.