SITE VISIT TO ARK EDEN. MEETING WITH JENNY QUINTON (FOUNDER & OWNER OF ARK EDEN).
On the 14th of March, I had finally made the first step into starting my first project that implements new technologies in order to combat carbon emissions in Hong Kong.
Ark Eden is an organisation that specialises in eco-education, farming, conservation and environmental activism.
Ark Eden has already planted trees predominantly around Mui Wo but also around Hong Kong. With their experience, I grasped the opportunity to learn more about the process of tree planting!
In the early stages of Ark Eden, there were fires all across the tops of the mountains all over Mui Wo which greatly harmed the ecosystem. These were mostly due to celebrations for a traditional festival in Hong Kong. Jenny was part of a group who banned these fires and started to help rebuild the damage that was done due to these fires.
Jenny then educated me on how tree planting is done in Hong Kong. What the processes are, if there were any rules and regulations, how much it was going to cost etc.
As easy as tree planting seems, in Hong Kong there are rules and regulations one must follow before being able to plant a tree. For example, there are only so many species of trees that can be planted in Hong Kong. The Hong Kong government strongly believes that Hong Kong should maintain the biodiversity of the forests as it was thousands of years ago, therefore resulting in many tree species to be banned from being planted. On top of that, the process to apply for planting trees is tedious. You must go through a handful of forums and questions until you are deemed fit to plant trees. Jenny explained to me how she had to go through this process in order to be able to help reforestation in Mui Wo.
Additionally, Ark Eden constantly monitors the trees to track if the rate in which they are growing. The process data and send it to the government as part of the procedure to plant trees. They also periodically fertilise and water the tree saplings to ensure that they are healthy and strong enough to strive on their own.
I had learned a tremendous amount from this site visit. I was oblivious to all the procedures, species and regulations. Initially, I thought that it was as easy as going a place and planting a tree sapling in.
This experience fueled my drive to explore and learn more about the process of planting trees in Hong Kong.