Saving The Rainforest One Cellphone At A Time

On June 24th, the founders of the Rainforest Connection launched a courageous Kickstarter campaign on to raise $100,000 to prevent illegal logging in the rainforest. The organization has come up with a creative solution to stopping illegal logging by turning old smartphones into autonomous listening devices that can monitor the forest for sounds of illegal activity, then send out alerts in real-time, which could help authorities to intervene before too much damage has occurred.

Here’s how the monitoring systems will work: The devices will be placed in tree canopies and out of plain site. They’ll able to detect sounds of logging, chainsaws, gunshots, or distress signals in the area. When these sounds are detected, the device will send an alert to the Rainforest Connection’s cloud server, which then sends out an SMS message to first responders in the area so they can stop the illegal activity. The recycled smartphones will be powering these devices as small solar panels. The need for batteries or other remote power supply will be removed.

The thought of using recycled smartphones to protect the rainforest is pretty ingenious, and the fact that it’s simple, inexpensive, and effective are all the reasons to get behind this innovative project.

Based in San Francisco, Rainforest Connection is an organization that transforms recycled cell-phones into autonomous, solar-powered listening devices that can monitor and pinpoint chainsaw activity at great distance. Their sole mission is to preserve the rainforest and prevent further damage to its ecosystem.

Aside from preventing illegal activity in the rainforest, another one of their missions with the Kickstarter campaign is to create a web and mobile app that will allow project backers to live-stream the sounds of the rainforest in the Amazon and Africa to bring a little piece of wild nature into modern life.

This actually turns out to be one of the coolest incentives for donators who’d like to give a monetary gift below $60. For those who’d like to give more, there’s a wide variety of great incentives including combo packs of T-shirts, totes, photo-streams, and even dinner and a day with the good folks at Rainforest Connection, just to name a few.

Even if you live nowhere near a rainforest, illegal logging can still have an impact on us, because it alters climate change and species extinctions which ultimately affects the planet.

Check out the link below to find out more about the campaign, and visit Rainforest Connection’s website where you can learn how to donate your old phone for use in protecting forests from illegal logging. The campaign ends on July 29th, 2014.

About The Author

Henry Lin

Henry covers the film, music, and general creative crowdfunding beat here at Fundster. When he's not glued to his YouTube feed, he's putting a camera in someone's face asking for their unfiltered opinion about whatever. Remember the Michael Caine / Gene Hackman thesis? Well Henry actually wrote one about Tiffany Amber Thiessen and that guy who played Ritchie Vallens in "La Bamba".