Apple very often boasts about its efforts to save the environment – be it something as controversial as removing the charging brick from the phone box, or something as useful as conserving mangroves to save the planet. The Cupertino-based giant has now announced a new effort in India, where the Applied Environmental Research Foundation (AERF) will safeguard the future of mangroves by creating alternative, sustainable industries in the local communities that cultivate and benefit from the biodiversity and resilience of the mangrove ecosystems.
In a release, Apple said that it is looking at Alibaug, an area in Raigad district near Mumbai that connects the city to a network of rivers branching off of the Arabian Sea. Alibaug is home to 21,000 hectares of mangrove forests that protect the Earth against impacts of climate change. AERF, which was awarded a grant by Apple last year, will apply learnings from Conservation International’s pilot blue carbon project in Cispatá, Colombia that was launched in 2018.
In Raigad, AERF is pursuing conservation agreements with communities that have lost their crops and fertile agricultural fields due to saltwater intrusion and the destruction of human-made dykes.
Archana Godbole, director of AERF, has said that plants are a representation of age and time. “And trees represent patience. They are silent spectators of time — the more I studied them and understood them, the more they humbled me. My experiences instilled in me that I want to work for conservation and save trees and forests.”
Lisa Jackson, Apple’s vice president of Environment, Policy, and Social Initiatives said, “the fight against climate change is a fight for the communities around the world whose lives and livelihoods are most threatened by the crisis, and that’s where we’ve focused our work — from Colombia to Kenya to the Philippines.” “Our new partnership in India continues this momentum, helping a community benefit economically from the restoration of the mangrove forests that protect against the worst impacts of climate change.”