Meeting Ranil

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‘This man is truly Jungly’ Gujarati magazine Chitralekha (c. 300,000) covered the event and launched it in their World Environment Day edition on 6th June 2013.

Ranil Senanayake presented a full day’s programme at ISKCON’s impressive Govardhan eco-village on Sunday 12th May 2013.  Around 50 delegates, mainly from organic farms and conservation NGOs attended.  It was the launch of the eco-conference facility being used for public events.

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We felt like we were on the cutting edge of the future, listening to ecological and agricultural solutions while sitting in an eco-designed conference facility nestling in the secondary range of the Western Ghats at the foot of an impressive forested mountain, 80km north of Mumbai.

This is what we discovered…

  • It was the perfect opportunity for Saha Astitva to link up with a global network of like-minded people.
  • Analog Forestry gives a way to understanding integration.  Saha Astitva stands for harmonious integration of forests, fields and people.  Here’s a tool for doing that.
  • Analog Forestry is a practical approach to rejuvenating degraded environments while providing useful products for humans.
  • We found the day highly educational and inspirational.  Following the event, Ranil and his wife Lorena Gamboa stayed with us for a few days at the farm.  We came out with a wonderful new friend and family member with Ranil.
We learned:
  1. How important to have a forest product that provides economic benefit to the local community.  In this case Ranil identified Karwandha jelly, which we quickly made and he took to Europe to demonstrate as a Non Timber product from the forest.
  2. Renewed respect for the process of photosynthesis.  Photosynthesis is the foundation of life on this planet.  Even greater respect for the value of leaves of trees.  There’s an argument that says farmers should be paid in respect to how many leaves they grow.  Based on an economic comparison with the current carbon prices, this would equate to approx… $1.34/kg.
  3. Analog Forestry is a method of replicating indigenous eco-systems, but purposely selecting species that have uses and value to human.  It is based on local survey and accessing a centralized database through the International Analog Forestry Network to identify such species.
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Presentations from the day can be viewed here
More on the amazing concept of Analog Forestry coming soon!