John Vidal – The Guardian, 7/27/2015
When the renowned Brazilian photographer Sebastião Salgado took over family land in the state of Minas Gerais, instead of the tropical paradise that he remembered as a child, he found the trees cut down and the wildlife gone. He was devastated.
It was 1994 and he had just returned from a traumatic assignment reporting on the genocide in Rwanda, he told a meeting of religious leaders discussing climate change in Paris last week.
“The land was as sick as I was – everything was destroyed,” said Salgado. “Only about 0.5% of the land was covered in trees. Then my wife had a fabulous idea to replant this forest. And when we began to do that, then all the insects and birds and fish returned and, thanks to this increase of the trees I, too, was reborn – this was the most important moment.”