New Progress in Green Cooperation on Earth Day: Ant Group and Israel National Foundation Confirm Partnership
On April 22, Earth Day, the National Foundation of Israel, one of the oldest environmental organizations in the world, established a green innovation partnership with Ant Group, a leading digital innovation platform in China. In the presence of Israel’s Consul General in Shanghai, the two sides signed a memorandum of understanding in Shanghai on the same day to jointly develop innovative solutions for afforestation, environmental protection and biodiversity and promote global green development.
On April 22 this year, the 52nd Earth Day, countries around the world focused on issues such as climate change, carbon neutrality and harmony between man and nature. Climate change is a common challenge facing mankind, and environmental protection is the biggest common divisor of human development. International scientific and technological cooperation on green development is an important part of the solution to this problem.
Under the MOU, the two sides will form a joint expert group of scientists to conduct academic and applied research on sustainable forest management, enhanced biodiversity and ecosystem conservation. The two sides will develop innovative technologies to address challenges in watershed management, crop efficiency and desertification. It is reported that the new technology will be implemented in ant forests.
Edward Shapira, Consul General of the Israeli Consulate in Shanghai, was present at the signing of the MOU. He said April 22 is Earth Day, an important day for the world to show its support for environmental protection. In terms of climate innovation and sustainable development, Israel is both a model in practice and a provider of solutions to global problems such as desertification.
“Today, we are proud to launch a partnership between China’s digital innovation platform, Ant Group, and Israel’s National Fund, an Israeli environmental organization with 120 years of experience in tree planting, to explore technological innovation and protect the global ecological environment,” said Edward.
Founded in 1901, the National Foundation of Israel is a non-profit organization dedicated to sustainable development. Over the years, the agency has adopted an integrated, multidisciplinary approach to greening, watershed management and soil conservation in semi-arid areas, and has developed advanced technologies to combat desertification. Figures show that the Israel National Fund has planted more than 245 million trees on an area of more than 160,000 hectares.
Ant Group, on the other hand, has inspired hundreds of millions of people to live a green and low-carbon lifestyle through the power of its digital innovation platform. Ant Forest, a subsidiary of Ant Group, was launched in August 2016. So far, it has attracted more than 550 million people, planted more than 223 million real trees, and won the United Nations’ highest environmental honor — Defender of the Earth Award in 2019. In March, the Research Center for Ecological and Environmental Sciences of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) jointly released a report that estimated the total output of ant forest ecosystems to exceed 11.3 billion yuan.
Peng Yijie, president of Ant Group’s social welfare and green development business group, said that since its launch, Ant Forest has been working with partners to scientifically plant trees to control desertification and protect the ecological environment. “Today we are delighted that the National Foundation of Israel has joined us as a partner in Ant Forest. No one is immune from the challenge of climate change. Through our partnership with the National Foundation of Israel, we hope to jointly develop innovative technologies to protect the planet.”
Science and technology are the core driving force for ecological protection, Peng said, adding that the cooperation is another attempt by Ant Forest to explore innovative technological solutions and upgrade the green achievements made by 550 million tree species through technology. “In the future, we will increase our own technology investment, constantly seek fellow travelers, with innovative ideas and technology to participate in the efforts to tackle climate change, to contribute to global sustainable development.”