5 is here to celebrate and connect people and organisations who are having a positive impact on the world. Our High 5 series gives the stage to these inspiring people – and asks them to pass the High 5 on to someone who has inspired them.
This week we give a High 5 to Andrea Pesce, founder of ZeroCO2, which plants trees to offset carbon, while helping farmers to manage land more sustainably.
Andrea told us about his bond with the natural world, how small actions can have a big impact, and who he’d like to give a High 5 to.
What inspired you to do what you do?
I have always had a close bond with nature. From the age of six I used to travel around South America with my family. It was while travelling that I developed a passion for the natural environment and our forests. At that time, I noticed that ecosystems were being progressively damaged by human activities, and I decided that I wanted to play a role in environmental protection.
Over the past five years, I’ve focused my studies on sustainable development approaches. I realised how sustainable development is connected with human wellbeing and environmental health. That’s why reforestation has a special meaning to me. I believe that having healthy ecosystems is the only way to ensure sustainable social and economic development for our society.
ZeroCO2 works to plant trees in various parts of the world. It helps mitigate deforestation, while making a positive social impact at the same time. The organisation works with farming communities who receive trees, as well as tutoring on organic farming and sustainable land management.
What advice would you give to others who want to make a positive impact?
I suggest starting with the little things, the small daily gestures: be mindful about what you buy, what you throw away. Even the smallest actions can be an example for other people, and many small actions can become real mass movements. The important thing is to start – to take the first step towards sustainability. Once you enter this world, it becomes easier to pay more and more attention to small everyday actions, and ensure our impact on the planet gets smaller and smaller.
Who do you want to pass a High 5 on to?
Without any doubt, Francesco Leva from Comparte Onlus. He’s a young professional who has supported ZeroCO2 in the development of high quality education and innovation projects in Latin America, since Comparte started out.