Climate change changes everything
Climate change is not a temporary concern for A Rocha. Climate change affects every living thing: species distribution on land and sea; migration patterns of birds, insects and other animals; and the timing of plant germination, including, of course, our crops.
Therefore, climate change affects everything A Rocha does: our research, our tropical forest restoration programme, our advocacy and teaching, our community training activities. Here are a just few examples of action we are taking:
Climate Stewards is part of the A Rocha network, encouraging us all to reduce our carbon footprint as much as we can and offset the rest. Climate Stewards supports community forestry and cook stove projects in Ghana, Kenya and Mexico.
A Rocha Portugal: European Storm-petrels and climate change
This research project, with Cardiff University, studies how climate change may affect the survival of this tiny seabird in relation to the surface temperature of the sea water and the availability of food. MORE
A Rocha Peru: Restoring forest in arid regions
In January 2014, A Rocha started a four-year project to restore Peruvian dry forest − one of the world´s most threatened ecosystems − and promote social development in and around a wind farm in Talara. Watch a short movie
A Rocha Uganda: Reducing deforestation and poverty with bio-sand filters
Over 600 bio-sand water filters have been distributed, eliminating the need to boil water over charcoal: about 15,000 people are drinking this safe water. The benefits are multiple! There is poverty reduction: £720,000 saved in charcoal costs and medical fees. Educational spin-offs, because healthy children are less often absent from school. For women, a huge liberation of time: 15 days saved per household per year! For every five families, 60 fewer bags of charcoal are bought each year. For 15,000 people, that’s 36,000 bags. One tree needs to be cut down to make two bags: so at least 18,000 trees are still growing, still providing food and shelter for wildlife, because of the filters. MORE
A Rocha Ghana: Rainforest protection and mangrove restoration
Atewa Range Forest Reserve is internationally recognized as one of the highest priority ecosystems in West Africa for its species diversity (e.g. over 570 butterfly species recorded!) high levels of endemism and great hydrological importance. Despite its unique value, the forest is threatened by mining and other human activities, so A Rocha is running major awareness-raising and advocacy activities, as part of a process towards gazetting Atewa Forest as a National Park. MORE
The Muni-Pomadze Ramsar site at Winneba, Central Region, is a mangrove wetland important as a species-rich woodland, a fish nursery and a turtle breeding site, but it has been degraded by charcoal production, firewood collection and inappropriate farming practices. These have damaged not only the biodiversity, but also basic livelihood options available to fringing communities. A Rocha has undertaken a range of activities to restore the site’s ecological integrity. MORE
Helping schools to understand climate change
A Rocha is helping young people in many countries to get to grips with climate change. In Portugal, for example, it’s part of the 8th grade national science curriculum, so when students visit the A Rocha study centre they not only learn about renewable energy, but see migrating birds in the hand, and discover how these warblers, thrushes and chats can be affected. A Rocha Portugal has also been training science teachers: this year a group from Finland, Romania, Estonia, Netherlands and Portugal came specifically to learn about climate change. They discovered the relevance of our long-term butterfly and moth monitoring, which can indicate changes in flight periods, as well as the distribution of species.