Growing at altitudes of up to 5,000 metres, polylepis forests, comprising 28 recognized shrub and tree species endemic to the mid- and high-elevation regions of the tropical Andes, are a significant origin of the flow of water into the headwaters of the Amazon.
If the Amazon rainforest are the lungs of the planet, then the Andes are its lifeblood. The world's last remaining hotspot for agrobiodiversity, the region is the origin of many nutritionally important crop species and superfoods-grains like amaranth and quinoa; lupine pulses and maca roots-that underpin ecosystems, economies and diets.
Tree planting is capturing the minds of those who look for fast climate action. Earlier this month, the Ethiopian Government announced a new world record: thousands of volunteers planted 353 million trees in one single day. This came shortly after a team of scientists identified suitable places in the world where up to 1 trillion new trees could be planted.