Project Info
Climate Change 2017
Award Winner
Project Overview

Brazilian history is closely linked to the Atlantic rain forest, which has a great biodiversity and provides a number of forest essential services to the sustainability of ecosystems. As a consequence of the historical process of degradation of the original 130 million hectares, only 28 million are still preserved in fragments. 17 million are unproductive and abandoned, and are the center of designated ecological restoration.Given the high level of degradation and low resilience of these areas, human intervention is essential for the regeneration of the forest. This will allow, as close as possible, to return to natural eco-systems, in terms of their structure and operation.Based on the theories of natural succession and techniques of nucleation, the Nucleário project is a geoengineering concept of restoration ecology in degraded areas, aiming at large scale with minimum maintenance and maximum efficiency. Produced on an industrial scale and made of biodegradable materials, it is designed to meet multiple functions including providing a barrier from the leaf cut ants, accumulation of water, shade for seedlings, protection against invasive species, easy storage and deployment from the air.In order to turn those 17 million hectares of unproductive and abandoned areas into forest again, Nucleário Project is funded in partnership with government and major sponsors. The NAU (Nucleário assembly units) will stay in each region until the Nucleários have been dispersed in the environment by helicopters. The dispersal strategy follows a GIS plan (Geographic Information System) developed by a multidisciplinary technical team. With the growth of the Nucleários the forest fragments begin to interconnect and exchange genetic material, moving towards a dynamic balance independently of human action.

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Rio de Janeiro