Without rainforests and other natural habitats, we would not only lose the wondrous biodiversity which makes them beautiful, but also the vital ecosystem services which we humans rely on.
At Nikwax, we feel that all people have a responsibility to do what they can to protect what is left of the natural world. That’s why we put money aside to fund conservation and reforestation in some of the most threatened areas of our planet.
Working with the World Land Trust
Like any other area of the business we want to make sure that our money is well spent. Donating to the World Land Trust is the best way we can find to ensure that threatened ecosystems are protected, not just today, but forever. The World Land Trust strategy is to use donations to purchase land in areas of ecological importance, and work with local partners and communities to manage the reserves sustainably.
Working with local people is at the core of the World Land Trust’s philosophy. Land purchases are ultimately handed over to local NGOs, who are best placed to gain the support and understanding of the communities involved. Small scale sustainable development projects allow the reserves to support themselves, ensuring their long term survival.
Visit the World Land Trust website to find out more.
At Nikwax we have been calculating our primary carbon dioxide emissions since 2007. Every year since then we have offset those emissions, plus an estimated figure for a pre-2007 year, by donating to the Río Canandé Reserve in Ecuador. These funds are used to regenerate damaged areas and prevent further deforestation by extending the reserve. Click here to find out how to offset your own emissions through the World Land Trust.
As well as a donation to cover our carbon footprint, we make a matching donation for use in the World Land Trust’s most urgent appeals. The WLT Action Fund provides the means to make land purchases where ecosystems are under imminent threat. The following map shows some of the projects which have directly benefited from Nikwax support.
Nikwax’s 2011 donations to the Action fund were used towards WLT’s Orang-utan appeal, assisting with the purchase of a 14 acre, strategically located parcel of rainforest in Malaysian Borneo.
WLT works with two partner organisations in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo: LEAP Spiral and HUTAN, who collaborate with one another to purchase and protect strategically located parcels of land within the highly bio-diverse Lower Kinabatangan Floodplain.
About 80% of Malaysia’s wild Orang-utan population is found in the state of Sabah but the Lower Kinabatangan is suffering from an alarming rate of deforestation, turning once dense forest into fragmented and isolated patches of trees. In these isolated areas, Orang-utan populations become stranded, unable to move safely through their forest home in search of food and mating partners – hampering their survival prospects.
Therefore, by protecting relatively small but strategically important parcels of land WLT is helping its Malaysian partners to create “Wildlife Corridors” that connect one protected area with another and create a larger safe haven for wildlife such as the Orang-utan to move safely throughout this unique rainforest habitat.
Isabelle Lackman, Director of HUTAN, said:
"This whole area is very important for wildlife and we are trying to purchase as many parcels as we can. The 14 acres is a riverine piece of forest and is prime habitat for Orang-utans and other wildlife, including proboscis monkeys, leaf monkeys, and hornbills." She added: "It is also part of the traditional elephant route for their migration past the village of Sukau from the Kinabatangan estuary downriver to the upriver forests. Had this land been converted to an Oil Palm plantation or for tourism development, the elephant route would have been cut off and this would results in a significant increase in conflict between people and elephants surrounding the village."
Click here to read the World land Trust's full article.
Working with the European Outdoor Conservation Association – EOCA
The European Outdoor Conservation Association raises funds from across the outdoor industry, and uses them to support conservation projects nominated by its members. By the end of 2012, EOCA will have contributed more than €1 million to conservation projects around the world.
Nikwax has worked closely with EOCA since it’s foundation in 2006. Our own founder and MD, Nick Brown, is now Vice President of the association. Nikwax working alone can only ever achieve so much, so cooperating with other businesses is an important way to spread the word and encourage wider participation.