Biodiversity can be described as the variety of plants and animal species, including microorganisms, typical for the eco-systems they live in. At Natural Habitats, we know that it is essential to conduct conservation practices and preserve forest, where biodiversity lives. Therefor, we are committed to the development of conservation and learning programs to promote the security of all species in the area of our farming operations.
Our farms are located in the North-West of Ecuador. This area has a variety of species, which are represented by: 21,000 plants, 402 amphibians, 407 reptiles (100 endemics), 706 fish, 1,559 birds (37 endemics) and 324 mammals (21 endemics). There are few areas with primary forest, which have not being declared as protected by the local government, from such areas we have acquired pieces of primary forest to protect and enhance presence of flora and fauna. Protecting and encouraging biodiversity is a fundamental pillar in our operations. Our agronomists control the environmental impact we have in the province. In order to do so, we conduct several programs within our facilities and together with our communities:
- Reduction of CO2 emissions
CO2 is a formula for carbon dioxide, which is a chemical compound that is found as a gas in the Earth's atmosphere. It is a very powerful greenhouse gas and is currently responsible for 60% of the 'enhanced greenhouse effect'. People produce CO2 gases in the day-to-day activities such as travelling, farming, heating houses, and other activities. Trees and plants, on the other hand, absorb CO2 gases. Organic farming plays a key role in soil carbon sequestration since it returns the carbon to the soil. Trees and plants absorb CO2 gases. In particular when degraded land is planted with forest the contribution to the 'neutralization' of CO2 is remarkably high. At Natural Habitats all development and planting have taken place on degraded land or grassland. Number of measures is applied within our farms to neutralize and reduce the emissions, namely: organic fertilizers, farming with perennials, less reduced fuel usage. Furthermore, we work hard to minimize the effects of forest and grass fires.
- Teaching communities to dispose garbage and recycle responsibly
Most rural communities in the North of Ecuador do not have access to a suitable and environmentally-friendly garbage collection system, which force them to burn or dump their home waste and garbage to the rivers, causing serious environmental effects. We believe that education-in-action is the best way to palliate and reduce irresponsible waste. We organize “mingas” (cleaning working days with communities) and teach people how to dispose and recycle their garbage; this activity contributes not only to the environment but also to the people’s health and hygiene by reducing diseases and contaminations.
- Resources management system
As a 100% organic and sustainable farming company all our operations have been designed in a way to reduce all ways of pollution (water, air, soil), and promote the development of the biodiversity. Our production protocols include chapters for the correct management of waste, water and soil; our supervisors constantly monitor the application of these practices.
Biological diversity defines our existence on the planet. Therefore, we recognise preserving biological diversity as one of the key values of our company.