Maya Nut Institute is committed to planting 25,000 Maya Nut trees each year with Reforest'Action in the Sayaxche municipality in Peten Department, Guatemala. The forests in this region are under threat by palm oil conglomerates and most communal lands have been sold to palm plantation owners. The plots that remain in the hands of the indigenous Quek’chi farmers are to be reforested with Maya Nut in 2014, 2015 and 2016.
Since the 1990s many new settlers have come to Petén. The area is experiencing severe deforestation in its southern half.
Deforestation has been particularly rapid near Laguna del Tigre National Park in western Petén.
To combat deforestation, Guatemalan president Álvaro Colom proposed dramatically expanding ecotourism around Maya archaeological sites, especially El Mirador, and trying to further develop an agricultural system in the southern portion of the Maya Biosphere Reserve that would prevent further northward migration. He called his plan "Cuatro Balam".
Local partners in this reforestation are the Ministry of Agriculture in Guatemala and the communities of:
- El Horizonte
- Zuchitan de Melchor
- Machaquilaito Poptun
- Sembradores Ecologicos Sayaxche
- Sacul arriba Dolores
- UNCADI San Luis
- Laureles las Cruces
- Barrio el Centro Sayaxche
- La Maya Itza Las Cruces
- La Técnica agropecuaria
- Grupo San Francisco
- El Limon Flores
- Setul Sayaxche
Our project is located on the plots in the hands of the indigenous Quek’chi farmers. They have been planting Maya Nut trees for the last few years and will plant, with the help of the Maya Nut Institute, 25,000 new trees in 2014, 2015 and 2016.