PLANT AT ALL COST! (ex-Army of Trees)
Director(s): François-Xavier DROUET – Writer(s): François-Xavier DROUET Contact Print page
Will trees save the climate? That’s the promise of many public policies, timber manufacturers, NGOs and multinationals. As deforestation accelerates and CO2 emissions break records, tree planting is presented as the magical solution to climate change. After all, we all know that trees capture carbon. But is it really that simple? Obviously not.
On the contrary, it's a very complex question, with very high stakes. Planting is expensive and requires monitoring over several years for the tree needs to reach maturity. A well-managed forest will regenerate itself. But afforestation, more often than not, will not result in the effect on the climate we’d hoped for. A number of conditions are needed for plantations to capture carbon effectively over time.
This film aims to show the extraordinary complexity of this topic. We’ll follow two threads:
- First…science. Whether they are geographers, soil experts, climatologists or biologists, their studies show that planting trees is not a magic solution. It can even have negative effects on biodiversity and the climate.
- The mobilization of civil society is another thread. As local conflicts multiply, many NGOs warn of the risks that major afforestation programmes pose to rural communities. In a world of 8 billion inhabitants, where access to land and water will cause considerable tensions, one cannot imagine large-scale reforestation without it threatening food security and the land rights of populations.
Planting trees should not let us ignore the priorities of putting a stop to fossil fuels and deforestation.
This investigation, carried out on five continents, will look at the limits of tree plantation as a solution to climate change from different angles:
- Fast-wood forests against global warming
- Tree planting for energy transition?
- Will a trillion trees save the climate?
- Carbon offsetting: a new stage in the financialisaton of nature?
A new documentary project by François-Xavier Drouet, author of LE TEMPS DES FORÊTS (The Time of Forests / SRG SSR Prize - Critics' Week, Locarno Festival 2018)