In 1979 teenage Jadav Payeng was so concerned by soil erosion that he started planting trees, in Majuli Island in Northen India, for four decades. All on his own, he has created a forest bigger than New York’s Central Park.
This once eroded, deficient, lifeless piece of land, has now become a flourishing forest, with its own eco-system. The trees, water and animals have all returned back to claim this once wasteland.
This amazing dedication was only discovered after journalists, went and visited Majuli, in the state of Assam, the largest river Island on Earth.
Jadav Payeng got the idea when after a terrible year of extreme flooding in 1979, eroded even more of this soil away. Experts claimed that within 20 years, it could be completely washed away.
Trees are a great natural way to prevent flooding, as the raindrops stay on the leaves and are evaporated back into the air. Therefore, less water reaches the ground. Tree’s also can absorb 120 gallons of water during a drought. In an area with unlimited water there are records of trees absorbing as much as 150 gallons of water in a single day.
This cycle of precipitation, evaporating, condensation and then again precipitation, or rainfall. Is what keeps these eco-systems thriving as they will have a continuous cycle of water. Which in an environment without trees, would just create these massive floods we see all over the news, the same ones that plagued Majuli.
When humans start messing around with nature, we put her off balance, and cause havoc. Everything has a design and purpose to it; even pesky spiders have a job to do.
After all this hard work the forest is now in danger of poachers and illegal loggers. Jadav says “The threat now comes from man who would destroy the forest for economic gain.’ he continues "There are no monsters in nature, except for humans.”