A FRAGILE PLANET
Today we are facing unprecedented environmental challenges, mainly driven by human population growth. Deforestation, burning fossil fuels, farming and industry all lead to pollution and the production of copious greenhouse gases. The measure of human demands on Earth’s natural resources is known as our ecological footprint. Currently, we use the equivalent of 1.5 Earths to produce all the renewable resources we use, but this is expected to rise to the equivalent of two Earths by 2050 (WWF, 2016), so the need to address this situation is critical and immediate.
Trees are natural consumers of carbon dioxide—one of the greenhouse gases whose buildup in the atmosphere contributes to global warming. Destruction of trees not only removes these ‘carbon sinks’, but tree burning and decomposition pump into the atmosphere even more carbon dioxide, along with methane, another major greenhouse gas. We are proud to have planted over a million trees so far, but there is still much more work to do.
Camps International has developed several eco-friendly solutions to energy production including building a biogas collector in Borneo, creating a bio-fuel from Jatropha seeds, an important and sustainable cash crop in Kenya, and manufacturing biomass fuel briquettes as an alternative to charcoal. We’ve also partnered with carbon offsetting organisations to install over 2,000 fuel efficient stoves that dramatically reduces the need for firewood, as well as improving human health.
Camp Borneo has led the way in building community facilities that are environmentally sensitive and ecological. Working alongside Arkitrek, we’ve constructed a learning resource centre on Mantanani Island that utilises driftwood, recycled tyres and plastic bottles. Increasingly we are integrating this approach into as much of Camps International's construction work as possible.
Since 2004, Camps International has undertaken regular beach clean ups in all our coastal locations and we’ve removed nearly 20 tonnes of marine refuse that would have otherwise ended up in the sea. Much of this has been recycled into artwork to raise awareness of marine conservation or curios that can be sold by local communities.