In Guyana’s Mabaruma region, located on a narrow plateau above the rainforest not far from the country’s border with Venezuela in South America, is a copse of rubber trees, nearly a century old, in danger of being cut down to facilitate roadway expansion.
Local environmentalists, who say that the trees, quite apart from producing oxygen and absorbing carbon dioxide, are an “iconic” feature of the area, have started an online petition aimed at halting their felling.
While those in support of extending the roadway have proposed a re-planting exercise, environmental advocates maintain that older trees, like the ones along Philbert Pierre Avenue (dubbed Rubber Walk), act as “vacuums”, absorbing more carbon than younger trees. They have called on those involved in the road expansion project to consider the trees in their design, and find an alternate route around them. At the time of publication, the petition had secured over 4,000 signatures.