REN - Redes Energéticas Nacionais, in a partnership with Unidade de Missão para a Valorização do Interior, the Town Council of Pedrógão Grande, and Quercus have promoted a reforestation action that involved around 150 students from middle schools in the municipality in April 13th.
This initiative marks the beginning of the reforestation of the electricity transmission line corridor of Penela-Tábua, which goes through the municipalities of Penela, Castanheira de Pera, Figueiró dos Vinhos, Pedrógão Grande, Góis, Arganil, and Tábua.
Under the motto 'Together We Shall Plant Tomorrow', the programme included a brief presentation by REN and Quercus at the Casa Municipal da Cultura (1.45 pm) on the importance of the preservation of biodiversity, where instructions on how to plant trees were given.
Subsequently, the participants - students and teachers from the Group of Schools of Pedrógão Grande, officers of the Unidade de Missão para a Valorização do Interior, of the Town Council of Pedrógão Grande, of REN and of Quercus - participated in a reforestation action near Escalos Cimeiros to jump-start symbolically the reforestation with native species of trees in the electricity transmission line corridor of Penela-Tábua, which will include around 46,750 trees. Strawberry trees were the chosen native species for this reforestation action.
For João Paulo Catarino, head of Unidade de Missão para a Valorização do Interior, 'we will only be able to meet our goals and achieve the expected results with the commitment and participation of everyone. One of the interesting aspects of this project that I would like to highlight is precisely the fact that it helps us to get through to young people, raising their awareness to the need to preserve and maintain our forest and, above all, to its importance. The partnership confirmed by the ‘Together We Shall Plant Tomorrow' action is a privileged strategy that allows us to implement a training action that combines education and action, thus encouraging collective responsibility and the will to intervene.'
'For Margarida Guedes, vice-mayor of the Town Council of Pedrógão Grande, this action is extremely important because it will create a continuous stretch of 40 ha in the municipality of Pedrógão Grande, thus promoting the division of the forest in the municipality. The Town Council of Pedrógão Grande is very happy with this initiative that counts on the involvement of the students of the municipality because they are our best allies to define medium- and long-term changes.'
On the other hand, João Gaspar, head of REN's Easements and Assets area, believes that 'over the past few years, REN has sought to adapt the vegetation in the corridors, promote the creation of a sustainable ecosystem, and encourage landowners to be more active in their lands, which in turn will result in better management of the corridors, prevention of fires, and creation of economic value for landowners.'
In the last six years, through corridor repurposing actions, REN planted around 820 thousand trees in over 1,900 ha, which represents about 400 trees a day. The company's goal is to reach the milestone of 1 million trees planted by 2018.
REN is a member of Movimento ECO - Empresas Contra os Fogos, a civil society movement supported by the Government, with the involvement of several Portuguese companies, which aims to promote the prevention of forest fires and raise public awareness of risky behaviour.
REN - Redes Energéticas Nacionais and CPM - Cooperativa Portuguesa de Medronho, the Portuguese strawberry tree fruit cooperative, have established a partnership to promote strawberry trees as one of the native species that landowners can grow on stretches of land crossed by electricity transmission line corridors. By entering into this partnership, which will have economic, social and environmental benefits, namely natural protection against forest fires, REN aims to maximise the profits that landowners can make from plots of land that were previously abandoned, thus promoting the maintenance and conservation of biodiversity.