This company wants to regrow Earth’s forests with drones

By Irina Ivanova
CBS News
October 11, 2017
Category: Forestry
Region: United States

Along with taking lives and causing millions of dollars in property damage, the wildfires in California this week are scorching the land in another way: Millions of trees are being destroyed. The blazes have charred more than 770,000 acres in the state alone, as fires around the country seemingly grow more destructive by the year.  Yet even that eye-opening number is a fraction of the devastation happening globally. The planet loses billions of trees every year due to a range of factors, including fire, illegal logging and clearance for agriculture. “Trees are being lost at the rate of about a football field a second,” said David Skole, professor of forestry at Michigan State University. … While governments and environmental groups have committed to re-foresting depleted parts of the world, “We aren’t doing the work fast enough,” added Lauren Fletcher. Fletcher, who spent 20 years as an engineer at NASA and Lockheed Martin (LMT), thinks he has a solution: drones. His company, BioCarbon Engineering, uses drones and data analysis to do large-scale replanting in areas that would otherwise take years to re-plant by hand.

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