A four-part mini-series published by Mongabay takes a deep look into the new technological advances that are being used to assist reforestation projects. In hopes of achieving long-term efficiency, the new innovations could be vital in fulfilling international goals. Targeted to repair degraded ecosystems and devastated forests, sequester carbon, and restore biodiversity, these advances have shown significant progression.

The main technologies are—drones, satellites, sensors, and computer modelings. 


Advanced computer modeling has helped aid tree-planting initiatives and projects. By collectively identifying each plant species and pairing it with its proper native local, these species have the best chance of thriving within the warming future.


The process of planting a tree typically requires a great number of people to aerate the soil, plant the seed or sapling, fertilize the grounds, and then tend to the growing plant. This process can be seen as time-consuming and labor intensive. But now, seed-sowing drones are able to automatically drop seeds from a certain altitude, in precise locations. Most likely these locations are where volunteers or workers are unavailable.

A system function called “swarming” allows the drones to sync up to each other and carry out the job in one simultaneous action. All supervised by a pilot, the drones work efficiently and effectively. 

Satellites And Sensors

A process that goes a little askew in upkeep is monitoring the growing trees after plantation. Without proper monitoring, many saplings are susceptible to disease, heavy weather changes, harsh climate conditions, illegal harvestings, and even wildfires. Scientists and agriculturists also lose viable feedback and data opportunities. 

By providing large-scale and long-term monitoring assistance, satellites can help improve the livelihood and overall health of the growing plants. More detailed data can also be gathered through laser scanners, high-resolution cameras, GPS trackers, and other sensor functionalities.  

Poor planning, inadequate monitoring, and low execution rates play into the failure of reforestation projects. With these new technologies, many projects and initiatives may have a higher success rate, in turn protecting and restoring larger pieces of land.