Our properties contain old growth native rainforests that contain a wide assortment of tropical hardwood species. More than 200 species of timber are found in these regions. More than 40 that are today commercially valuable. Our forests contain millions of cubic meters of harvestable timber, which has a potential through sustainable management to increase in volume each year.
The process for timber extraction as shown on the project studies include provisions for environmental impact and for minimizing erosion through only the selective harvest of mature trees with a sufficient diametric class as cataloged in the forest inventory that are approved by the government as part of the projects licensing process. A complete inventory of the trees was performed and aluminum identification tags placed at chest height on each tree to identify trees that are destined and approved for extraction. Each tree number approved is specified on the operational license extended by IPAAM and attached to an ACOF (Authorization for Forestry Harvest) and only these trees can be felled and extracted in order to avoid government fines. The natural regeneration of the surrounding forest is guaranteed through this process, as is the integrity of the biodiversity found within the same. Also certain areas within the project are set aside for perpetual conservation as required by law hence the title of “Sustainable Forest Management Projects”. IPAAM and IBAMA inspectors pay special attention to assure that only those trees that are approved for extraction are actually extracted and the other conservational guidelines that call for directional felling and low impact techniques are followed.
Sustainable forestry production allows for an initial thinning followed by the harvesting of selected trees every year to make room for new growth and replanting (reforestation and afforestation), provided selective tree marking is applied. Tree marking involves the selection of individual trees to be harvested, while leaving trees to grow for future harvests and to provide wildlife habitat. The actual process of tree marking is recognized as being both an art and a science. The objective of marking is to optimize growth for all trees being retained rather than attempting to maximize growth on a few individual trees. Marking also allows our forest managers to make changes, if necessary, to selected trees before the harvest takes place.
To maintain focus on sustainability, we are committed to harvest only 5-7% of the timber volume every year, whilst continually replanting native trees, grown from seeds we harvest in the forests and raised in our own plant nurseries. This system of afforestation and reforestation constantly improves the forest quality and increases the base volume of timber in the long term. The Company has also bought timber from other managed forests for its export products and not tapping into its Timber Inventory that is primed for future preservation.
The Company is dedicated to eventually include all of its properties in preservation programs such as the United Nations REDD+ Program, to certify Carbon Credits each equivalent to the storage of a metric ton of carbon. The sequestering and storage of CO2 has become not only an environmentally conscience activity but also effective in combating the greenhouse effect in that it helps industries that buy these credits offset their emissions, the primary causes of global warming.
In order to maintain this activity a priority, the Company recently purchased Earth Pass, Inc. a Florida corporation that operates a fully owned and licensed division in Brazil known as Amazon Sustainable Development Co. Earth Pass and ASD now a wholly owned subsidiary with the potential to perform the necessary studies and certify carbon credits for sale on the growing Voluntary Markets worldwide where these credits now enjoy an increased demand after the Paris COP 20 set in place new and more aggressive carbon offset programs signed into effect by 180 nations at the summit.