Growing the ARC Forest

16 November 2018

Sailing allows us to travel long distances with relatively low carbon emissions, but the reality is that all yachts burn diesel for motive power and to generate electricity. Conscious of this impact, ARC organiser World Cruising Club has teamed up with local non-profit forestry organisations in Gran Canaria to develop and sponsor a carbon offset project, planting trees where they are most needed, to help offset the carbon emissions created during the ARC crossing.


Since 2010, almost 2300 native trees have now been planted by ARC and ARC+ volunteers on a deforested site in the mountains above Las Palmas de Gran Canaria; not only helping to offset carbon emissions, but also helping to recreate one of the most threatened eco-systems on Gran Canaria. The project improves bio-diversity, reduces soil erosion and mitigate flooding, with the aim to reforest 30% of the island. Managing the project is the Canaries based environmental charity Foresta, ensuring that the small trees planted by crews will grow to become a true sustainable forest, linking areas of historic indigenous woodland to make a “green cordon” around the mountain tops and restoring the native cloud forest eco-system.

Today, 27 ARC participants travelled by bus to the ARC Forest site and were greeted by Chief Forester Sergio who led them up the steep hill to the high forest planting site. Under the warm Canarian sunshine, he talked through the ARC Forest preparations, informing participants on the different types of tree being planted, as well as demonstrating how to successfully plant the trees to ensure maximum likelihood of survival. He announced that over 90% of the trees planted survive, as they are carefully nourished and cared for in the early stages of growth.


Once the trees had been planted, crews were provided with a tasty picnic lunch on site with a great view over Las Palmas, before returning by bus back to the Marina at 1300.

Many thanks goes to the participants who attended today’s Forest trip as well as organisation Foresta for their on-going support.