Thailand Deploys ‘Seed-bombing’ Military Planes to Plant Thousands of Trees in Devastated Landscape

August 30, 2019 Updated: September 4, 2019

The world has seen the destruction of natural forest habitat in recent decades like no other era in human history. Some nations have yet to address this crucial environmental matter for all sorts of reasons, while others have done so—and with encouraging success stories to show for it. Thailand is one such example of the latter.

The Thailand government announced in 2019 that it was planning to pilot a new project to “bomb” their own country, flying military planes over areas needing trees and carpet bombing the landscape with fertile cargo.

While most bomber planes are associated with wartime, though, these particular aircraft will have a different mission in mind—they’ll be “seed bombing” the area, dropping hundreds of thousands of seeds for trees indigenous to the region in order to start accelerating their reforestation efforts.

Watch a demonstration of this innovative, environmental solution:

Aerial Reforestation

Seed bombing is a method for repairing deforested land.And that means dropping *a lot* of seeds from the sky.Video credit: TomoNews US

Posted by Futurism on Sunday, May 1, 2016

The concept of “seed bombing” was developed by a Japanese natural farmer and philosopher named Masanobu Fukuoka. The practice, which was initially done by hand, involves creating “seed balls” of earth with large quantities of seeds that can then be thrown in a new area to rapidly plant and introduce a vegetation species.

Seed balls have been used in “guerrilla farming” since long before the Thailand government decided that it was time to start taking aggressive action to save their forests.

They can be used to spread a growth very quickly and plant it in large areas with little effort—and although it’s against the law to do this to an unsuspecting business or your neighbors, it’s a great way for countries to repopulate areas that have been stripped of their vegetation.

Illustration – Shutterstock | Doidam 10

Airplanes were brought into the mix when ecologists realized that military strategy may be the best way to combat environmental destruction—as it was in areas like Hawaii in the 1930s to repopulate vegetative areas destroyed by forest fire—to help things grow again.

The Thailand government will spend the next year monitoring the seed-bombed areas from the sky to see how well the trees are taking root and will re-evaluate each year to address their needs properly.

If the program is successful, it could serve as a model for other nations that are sorely in need of some reversal trends with regards to deforestation; regions like Indonesia, the Amazon, and East Africa could all use assistance helping to repopulate the forests that have been wiped out so severely in the last handful of years.

Illustration – Shutterstock | Love Silhouette

In Thailand, massive deforestation in the mid-1900s left the nation facing a landmass that was just 25 percent covered in trees by the early 1970s, down from over 60 percent in the early decades of the 20th century.

The nation knew it had to take immediate action to curb the harmful destruction of their forests—but with millions of trees still needing to be replaced in the coming years, they’ve taken their efforts, quite literally, to new heights.

For a nation that desperately needed to step up and reforest the areas that were wiped clean decades ago, this is proof that a nation can beef up their efforts on a military scale for a large-scale impact.