Text by: Ilán Greenfield
Does it have to come from above? Does it have to come from below? Does it have to come from the higher ups, from the large-scale dispositions of the people in power? Or of the daily actions of each citizen? How do we save the planet? How do we reverse the consequences of climate change?
It is clear, now, that to positively impact the environment, we must act together. And we, the citizens, are a key piece for this. We can, in real terms, contribute to change through what we do.
Mindo Cloudforest Foundation (MCF), in its tireless fight to conserve nature, has created an innovative initiative to modify the paradigms of the past: a digital application that measures your efforts in favor of the environment. And with every effort you make, an opportunity to take advantage of the pure air and special experiences that nature can offer you.
The so-called ‘Chocó biosphere’ is one of these magical points of our nature – an axis of the lung planetary. And in the last two hundred years, it has suffered the indiscriminate destruction of its habitat. These lush forests are so powerful that they produce their own clouds; its own rain; they offer an indispensable balance for nature; they buffer erosion and droughts for the benefit of people across the country. Its variety of species of ora and fauna is among the most biodiverse on the planet. Its endless vivid landscapes have fascinated visitors from all over the world. And they become increasingly popular as a new destination to go to.
That makes you curious to know this fabulous destination, that you want to venture to this universe of cloud forests and experience the well-being that its nature offers in its purest form, that is also an important contribution. In the words of Senegalese environmentalist Baba Dioum, “you will only take care of what you love and you will only love what you know.”
Through the MCF Biosphere application —which you can download on our website— you will accumulate points thanks to the ecological actions you complete. In this first version, there are simple actions such as recycling your waste, planting a tree or riding a bicycle (the app recognizes how far you have walked, for example), all good habits that every environmentally responsible citizen should adopt.
With your score, you can redeem prizes with MCF and its allies. Stays in lodges, tickets to reservations, promotions in sustainable restaurants in the Chocó area, foundation t-shirts; prizes, in themselves, that invite you to learn more about the ecological efforts being made in the region and encourage you to discover this magical world in greater depth.
MCF is one of the great conservation entities of the Northwest of Pichincha. It bases its work, as the title of the app proposes, on the Ecuadorian Chocó Biosphere. It has several forest reserves that protect threatened species; It also has successful carbon dioxide compensation programs, which offer international companies the opportunity to invest in the reforestation of Chocó to offset their greenhouse gas-emitting activities.
The foundation’s nurseries, located at different elevations, produce tens of thousands of native trees per year planted by both the foundation and third parties (during the next annual cycle it is projected to reach 100,000 trees). In this way, it seeks to restore healthy forest corridors, central to strengthening the ecology of this impacted region.
But perhaps what most characterizes the foundation, after all, is its emphasis on opening ‘consciences’, with community projects of sustainable empowerment through eco and bird tourism, seeking to make the environment a priority for the populations local.
With an app like this, the foundation takes a leap: reaching not only those who care for their precious natural resources, but also everyone who, from afar, does not know how to help or what to do. MCF Biósfera can be your guide. Start with specific actions and go out to meet this biosphere of cloud forests that so require our care, love and understanding.