In a flexible funding campaign on Indiegogo, Environmental group No Drill Ecuador a huge fundraising effort to crowdfund $1.8 Billion in an effort to halt oil drilling in the Amazon rain forest located in Ecuador. More PR campaign than realistic crowdfunding project, the initiative was posted by Tamsin Hollo who operates a vintage clothing store in Southern California.
While the campaign is flexible – therefore any funds donated will be transferred – Hollo indicates all funds will be dontated directly to the World Land Trust which purchases land to preserve the habitats and ecosystems.
On August 15th the Ecuadorian Government announced that it has opened previously protected land in the Yasuni basin for oil development. The campaign describes this rainforest as the “lungs of the world” and, instead of feeling helpless, she launched crowdfunding campaign.
Hollo stated, “I’m tired of feeling helpless in the face of accelerating environmental disasters. The greatest habitat on earth is being destroyed to get oil that we’ll never be able to burn without destroying the planet. It simply doesn’t make sense.”
The Amazon rainforest, the most biologically diverse area on Earth, is the world’s largest absorber of C02 gas. It also swaps vast amounts of water and energy with the atmosphere and is thought to be important in controlling both local and regional climates, as well as ocean currents.
In 2007, Ecuador’s President Rafael Correa asked the world’s nations to supply $3.6 billion to preserve protected lands from oil development. Hailed by environmentalists as a new paradigm for environmental protection in developing countries, it failed as only $13 million was raised.
Reportedly Indiegogo was reticient to allow this campaign to proceed but finally agreed to let them to solicit the funds. Asked if the group thought they could really raise nearly 2 billion dollars, Ms Hollo replied,
“The goal is high because the stakes are high. Once the Amazon is gone, we’ll never get it back, or the benefits it provides all of us. I don’t know if we’ll reach our goal, but we’re urging people who feel passionately about the environment and climate change to help us try.”
For perspective if the project’s $1.8 billion target to be reached, every human on the planet would have to donate approximately 25 cents.
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