The Nascentes Program is the largest initiative ever launched by the Government of the State of São Paulo to maintain and restore riparian forests – vegetation located around springs and along river banks, streams, lakes and dams which protects the surroundings of water bodies, avoiding siltation, facilitating the water flow regularization in addition to providing shelter and food for local fauna.
Bringing together different actors, such as public and private companies, public power and civil society, the program optimizes and directs public and private investments for the protection and restoration of riparian forests, springs and water eyes.
With this program the restoration of around 20 thousand hectares of riparian forest will be promoted.
The goal of the first phase of this program is to restore 4,464 hectares of riparian forest, using 6.3 million seedlings of native species.
Various plantation actions have been started in the cities of Joanópolis, Piracaia, Jacareí/Igaratá, Salesópolis e Cajati, among other restoration initiatives, totaling over 630 hectares and more than one million of planted seedlings (reaching approximately 1667 seedlings per inhabitant).
630.46 hectares 1,052,354 seedlings
The Riparian Forest Importance
Riparian forests are just as important for the protection of rivers and lakes as the eyelashes to our eyes. They are fundamental to maintain the water quality for all. As well as our eyelashes prevent dirt from entering our eyes, the vegetation grows on the borders of springs, streams and rivers, protects the water.
The figure below illustrates the presence or absence of riparian forests and their consequences.
On the left side, we have a robust river, with riparian forests helping the action of nature. On the right side, we have the ravages from the absence of such vegetation. Without riparian forests, springs dry up, rivers and streams banks are undermined, superficial flow increases and water infiltration into the soil decreases, reducing the water reserves from the soil and the groundwater. The consequences are dramatic for the environment: the diffuse pollution reaches the fountainheads easily; aquatic life is damaged, and disorderly occupation reaches the rivers and reservoirs banks, turning them into large sewers or garbage deposits.
Nascentes Program Certificate and Seal
Any individual or legal person running an ecological restoration project in the Riparian Forest Program, being approved by the Steering Committee, can receive the certificate.
Voluntary projects which restore at least 10 hectares or those who add 10 hectares to the project compling with its legal obligations that add 10 hectares to the project, or the double of the required restoration, receive the Riparian Forest Seal, a commitment symbol with the preservation of the environment and the concern on water resources security in the State of São Paulo. More information: SMA Resolution No. 50 of July 24, 2015 (In Portuguese).