Trees in Africa - A change from carrier bags

Whilst researching environment matters for bags, print, and packaging I came across this news item in The Independent. The intention is to plant a 15 kilometre band of trees all the way across Africa, to impede the encroaching Sahara desert. How's that for ambition?

It's not often I see something and think it's all upside. I am no expert on tree planting, but this idea seems brilliant. Whilst the trees may need irrigating while they get established, ultimately they will keep the sun off the ground, improve the soil, reduce heat gain and evaporation, and if wide enough, the tree band could contribute to a cooler, more humid, micro climate.

You may wonder why I am blogging about trees in Africa when I run a packaging business. Before starting APL I used to travel a lot to Africa. Flying over desert for many hours makes an deep impression, and watching an encroaching desert displace wildlife and farmland makes a deeper impression, which is life changing. It made me take climate change very, very seriously. Running a packaging business involves us in environmental matters. Often it's difficult to come up with easy answers- apart from reduce, re-use, and recycle. Planting vast numbers of trees in Africa seems a great idea. Let's hope there is the political will in Africa and the funds to see it through. I will be following it, and it is something APL may consider supporting.

I would be interested to hear if any of our customers and potential customers think we should help support this project in some way? I would like to hear your views and would also like to receive any first hand knowledge on the project and tree planting in Africa.

Yours, Nick Varlow, APL Express
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