Forests are the Earth's lungs

In 2019, we held our ‘Experience Forests, Experience PEFC’ photo contest for the third time. Taking place in 13 countries, we received thousands of fantastic forest photos from around the world.

Though it was not easy, we managed to choose our top 12 images, all of which can be seen here. For every month of 2020, we will be showcasing one of these photos. 

Our photo for January is ‘Best Friend of Nature’, taken by Sofyan Effendi in Gunung Leuser National Park in North Sumatra, Indonesia. Sofyan tells us more about his photo and the importance of elephants in Indonesian forests.

How do you feel about forests, both professionally and personally?

Forests are the Earth's lungs. They have a very important task for the Earth's ecosystem. The forest is a place for a variety of plants and is home to thousands of species of animals with a sustainable food chain. We must maintain our forests and care for them, to protect our Earth and to make sure that all living things can coexist with nature.

How did the forest inspire you to take your winning photo?

My photo ‘Sahabat Alam’ or ‘Best Friend of Nature’ shows the son of an elephant trainer, a so-called mahout, in Gunung Leuser National Park in North Sumatra, Indonesia. The mahouts bring the elephants to the jungle to protect the national park from wild animals. The elephants’ task is to prevent wild animals from entering the plantations.

What do you think about the work that an organization such as PEFC/IFCC does to care for forests?

I think that PEFC/IFCC, dedicated to protecting and caring for forests, is a great organization, given the many trees that are currently being felled by illegal loggers. With this organization, I hope that our forests and ecosystems can be maintained.