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Wednesday
Jul252018

What Connects Prince Charles, Jane Goodall and Haiti? Answer: TREES.

A book being published in October with a foreward by HRH The Prince of Wales and an introduction by Jane Goodall will be designated "tree positive" because one new tree will be planted for every copy published--and half those trees will be planted by smallholder farmers in Haiti. Each tree they plant earns farmers the crop seeds, tools and organic agricultural training they need to significantly increase yields and incomes through a model the Smallholder Farmers Alliance has developed called "tree currency."

The book in question is Man of the Trees: Richard St. Barbe Baker, the First Global Conservationist by Paul Hanley and published by the University of Regina Press. On the back cover will be a Tree Positive logo and inside will be the explanation:  

One new tree will be planted and one existing tree will be saved for every copy of this book that is published. Trees will be planted in Kenya by the International Tree Foundation and in Haiti by the Smallholder Farmers Alliance. Trees that would otherwise be at risk for cutting will become protected forest areas through the work of The Forest Trust and with ongoing multi-stakeholder oversight. 

All three of the organizations involved to make the book Tree Positive are legacies of St. Barbe, as his friends called him. And it will also be “carbon neutral”:

The carbon emissions resulting from the production of this book have been calculated, reduced and offset to render the book “carbon neutral”. CO2logic offers the CO2-Neutral certification to organizations that calculate, reduce and offset their climate impact. The CO2-Neutral label is validated by Vinçotte, an international independent certification body. 

The Haiti connection came about because St. Barbe was my teacher for the last years of his life. It is directly due to his influence that I am planting trees in Haiti with my colleague Timote Georges. 

I wrote the following comment for the book:

My friend and mentor Richard St. Barbe Baker was a genius at figuring out how to seamlessly integrate tree planting into the cultural DNA of millions of people from all walks of life and all corners of the globe. This book is part biography and part handbook for engaging a new generation in conserving and restoring the world’s forests. 

You can pre-order the book now from Amazon and other online book sellers around the world.

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ps: below are just some of the advance comments on the Man of the Trees book

HRH the Prince of Wales (excerpt from his foreward to the book) 

… St. Barbe Baker, a giant of the global conservation movement who foresaw the environmental crises we face today. 

St. Barbe, as friends called him, was a true pioneer. Long before the science of climate change was understood, he had warned of the impact of forest loss on climate. He raised the alarm and prescribed a solution: one third of every nation should be tree covered. He practiced permaculture and agroecology in Nigeria before those terms existed and was among the founding figures of organic farming in England.

Jane Goodall, Founder, Jane Goodall Institute and Roots & Shoots

Why have we not heard of this extraordinary Man of the Trees, Richard St. Barbe Baker? He was, without doubt, one of the greatest advocates for the protection and restoration of forests ever. I am amazed by his life and accomplishments. He is one of my heroes. 

Wanjira Maathai, Chair of the Board, Green Belt Movement 

Richard St. Barbe Baker saw, years ago, what many of us are only now realizing. That environmental degradation is threatening our life support systems. He is celebrated by the environmental movement, including environmental activists like the late Professor Wangari Maathai, for his vision of a healthy future.

Phillippe Cousteau, Founder, EarthEcho International 

The story of Richard St. Barbe Baker is an inspiring tale of a 20th century conservation hero to whom we all owe a great debt of gratitude. This book is a terrific and entertaining story you won’t want to miss. 

Felix Finkbeiner, Founder, Plant-for-the-Planet 

To save our future, we children and youth need inspiring stories like the one of Richard St. Barbe Baker. Every tree helps us to combat the climate crisis. Every touching story makes us change the way we live. Let’s plant a better future! 

Liz Dowdeswell, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario & Former UN Under Secretary General, UNEP 

This biography of pioneering conservationist and environmental campaigner Richard St. Barbe Baker is in part a tribute to a remarkable man, and in part a guidebook for re-energizing our collective efforts to walk more lightly on Earth. In taking the reader through his life and career, Paul Hanley leaves no stone unturned: thoroughly researched chapters detail the depth and breadth of St. Barbe Baker’s activities to stave off deforestation and ecological degradation. I have no doubt this volume will inspire people everywhere to follow his example. 

Scott Poynton, Founder, The Forest Trust 

Richard St Barbe Baker changed the course of my life with inspiring stories from a life lived so richly among the world’s forests. This beautiful book brings St Barbe’s wisdom back to the fore to inspire a new generation just when the world’s forests so desperately need us. 

Vance Martin, President, The WILD Foundation, Chair, Wilderness Specialist Group, World Commission on Protected Areas (IUCN)  

St Barbe was an extraordinary human being….nothing less.  It was my distinct lifetime honor to be mentored by him in all things trees. But there is more. In addition to his unsurpassed record of tree planting around the world, he was equally indefatigable in his embrace (literally) of all things human…our diversity, peculiarities, and challenges. Indeed, while our world desperately needs the practical results and inspiration offered by “the tree(s),” St Barbe deeply understood -- far more than any other conservationist of his era -- that human reconciliation (personal and cultural) is the critically important ‘spiritual’ outcome that can dramatically transform our world.   

Satish Kumar, Editor Emeritus, Resurgence & Ecologist & Founder of Schumacher College

This is an outstanding book about an outstanding man.

Richard St Barbe Baker, deservedly called “Man of the Trees” was a pioneer, a champion, an activist, a visionary and a leader of the environmental movement. He inspired millions of people to plant trees and nurture the natural world. He is no longer with us but now through this book we can continue to be inspired to serve the great cause of maintaining the integrity of the planet earth.

Paul Hanley’s beautifully written biography of St Barbe Baker reaffirms the everlasting legacy of a great earth healer; yes, that is what he was, a great earth healer. 

Whoever is interested in the right relationship between people and planet earth should read this book; it is a source of spiritual nourishment and timely reminder for practical actions.

John Jeavons, President, Ecology Action, champion of biointensive agriculture 

Richard St. Barbe Baker inspired the planting of billions of trees worldwide. Given that we have lost almost half the trees on Earth compared with 10,000 years ago it is clear that the planet needs our proactive love. What better way to be so inspired to loving action than by Paul Hanley’s book, Man of the Trees: Richard St. Barebe Baker, the First Global Conservationist. It’s irresistible.  We are, and can be, the world of difference needed! 

Alan Grainger, University of Leeds

This important book draws attention to Richard St. Barbe Baker’s role as a pioneering global environmentalist, fills in gaps in his life story not covered by previous books, and sheds new light on what made the man tick.

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