Baiyer River, Papua New Guinea

Planning Stage

Baiyer River Rainforest Reserve

Baiyer River Rainforest Reserve, Papua New Guinea

Height: TBD  |  Length: TBD  |  Built: TBD  |  Engineering firm: TBD

Threat/Opportunity:

The Baiyer River Sanctuary opened in 1968 and covers 2.9 square miles of the island of Papua New Guinea. The island has lost a substantial portion of its rain forest due to wildfires, settlement, and conversion to oil palm farms. The sanctuary was established to protect endangered wildlife species and encourage breeding while in captivity.

Approximately 11,200 square miles of New Guinea rainforest (about 15% of the total) are currently degraded, with a similar number lost since 1972 (when forests were first accurately mapped). The forest is currently shrinking 1.4% per year, and significant tracts of accessible forests have been degraded as a result of the mining, timber, oil, natural gas, and fisheries industries, the production of palm oil, coffee, cocoa, coconut, tea and vanilla, and the rapidly expanding human population.

Goals:

  1. Figure out how to work in a country where crime and corruption are rampant, but the forest may hold the solution to creating alternative, sound economic opportunities through ecotourism and scientific exploration.
  2. Build a walkway to inspire canopy research in a forest that is almost entirely unexplored, enlisting the aid of local government/people/industry.
  3. Save, discover and share PNG’s biodiversity with the world, to create a steady stream of ecotourism as an alternative to environmental destruction.

Papua New Guinea: a Biodiversity "Hot Spot"

The Baiyer River Sanctuary is a nature reserve along the Baiyer River in the Western Highlands Province of Papua New Guinea. New Guinea is the second-largest island in the world (after Australia), and is home to the world’s third-largest rainforest (after the Amazon and the Congo). Forests cover 71% of the New Guinea landmass: 80% of those forests are rainforests, the remaining 20% are a combination of dry evergreen forest, swamp forest, and mangroves. Scientists estimate that Papua New Guinea is home to over 20,000 species of animals and plants – half of which are yet to be scientifically named, and half of which are unique to the island.

What is a "Hot Spot"?

A “Hot Spot” is a forest habitat of high biodiversity and critical environmental importance. Unfortunately, many of these ecosystems are threatened by habitat destruction, climate change, and other factors. MISSION GREEN believes that these areas could significantly benefit from a canopy walkway conservation program.

MISSION GREEN Global "Hot Spots"

Canopy Walkways and Walkway Prospect Locations

1. Amazonian Peru (1994)

2. Myakka River State Park, Florida (2000)

3. The Habitat Penang Hill, Malaysia (2017) – Built and Funded!

4. Sequoia Park Zoo, Eureka, California (2021) – Built and Funded!

5. Ranomafana State Park, Madagascar

6. Gorongosa National Park, Mozambique

7. Western Ghats, India

8. Royal Manas National Park, Bhutan

9. Baiyer River Rainforest Reserve, Papua New Guinea

10. TBD

11. TBD

12. TBD