How Global Tree Pledge Frenzy Threatens Ancient Grasslands

Ancient Madagascan grasslands are falling victim to a trend to afforest the world that has gripped political leaders from Madagascar to Ethiopia, and from Turkey to the United States, according to botanist Cédrique Solofondranohatra, a PhD student at the University of Antananarivo and Kew Madagascar Conservation Centre. While there are many reasons to restore ecosystems, mostly to do with bringing back their ability to supply human needs such as wood, fish or water, one new imperative stands out: to absorb more carbon.


Vigna pygmaea, in Mwekera, Zambia. This species flowers after fires fueled by grasses.

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