Reforesting With Drones
” Lauren Fletcher is aiming to tackle global climate change by planting one billion trees per year with his fleet of drones.
Fletcher, who is the CEO of Oxford-based BioCarbon Engineering, and his team are developing planting technologies that will be integrated with unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and sensors, allowing them to carry out “precision forestry“. This uses geospatial information in forest planning and management, as well as site-specific silvicultural operations.
The technology has reached the semi-final stage of the UAE’s Drones for Good competition taking place in Dubai. The winner will be announced on 7 February and pocket $1 million (£656,000) to help develop their project.
Global deforestation is one of the biggest problems contributing to climate change, with mining, agriculture and urban expansion destroying 26 billion trees per year. Yet Fletcher and his team are set on remedying industrial scale deforestation with industrial scale reforestation.
” I’d been following trends on drones for the last five years,” Fletcher tells WIRED.co.uk. “Global deforestation is happening at an industrial scale. Governments and organisations are spending billions planting trees, but the standard method of hand-planting can’t keep up.” “