As we have read in every science book since middle school, Deforestation is one of the biggest causes behind Climate Change & Global Warming. We have already seen the effect it has on surrounding areas, but there is very little that is done to prevent or correct it. Usually the reason for this is that the rate of deforestation is a lot faster than the rate of re-plantation. We can never hope to counter the 10 billion trees that are cut down around the globe annually with just determination & manual labor. That’s where drones come in.
Drones have so far only been used for Surveillance & Aerial Photography. Now a UK Based Startup, called BioCarbon Engineering plans to use them to save the world. Founded by former NASA Engineer Lauren Fletcher, this company wants to use pre programmed drones to repopulate the forests on Earth, on a big enough scale to reverse the damage caused by human deforestation.
Their plan is to use Fixed-Wing Drones to map the topography of the land, along with as the nutrients & biodiversity native to the area. This data is put into an algorithm, which generates a “Precision Planting Platform” which other planting drones will use as guidance.
These planting drone are actually Multi-Rotor Drones, which will fly 10 feet above the ground, using the trajectory developed by the algorithm to fire seed pods at per-determined positions. This “Precision Forestry” will be used a tool to plant trees at an extensive scale.
While some people might see this new technology as a sign of machines taking over human jobs, the researchers who developed this program see this as a helping hand, giving farmers unprecedented access to remote & difficult terrains, where sending humans can be expensive & messy.
BioCarbon is already working with a plantation in South Africa, with a commitment to plant trees. This provides a golden opportunity to test the program in different environments & learn about how to deal with different soils & plant species. The ultimate goal for this program is to plant 1 Billion Trees a year, revolutionizing the fight against Climate change.