Harley-Davidson, Inc. is working with The Nature Conservancy to help restore the world’s critical forests through the Conservancy’s Plant a Billion Trees program. Renew the RideTMis a global initiative to help preserve the great outdoors for future generations of riders, and mobilize Harley-Davidson’s global community of riders to raise funds to help plant 50 million trees worldwide by 2025.
Support for this program kicked off during the company’s 110th anniversary celebration in August 2013 with the launch of its Renew the RideTM initiative and a ceremonial tree planting in the company’s headquarter city of Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
In honor of the company’s anniversary and the launch of the initiative, the Harley-Davidson Motor Company and the Harley-Davidson Foundation also supported the planting of 110,000 trees in Brazil’s Atlantic Rainforest during the first year of the relationship. The Atlantic Forest of Brazil is one of the most beautiful and diverse rainforest habitats - 500 years ago it covered approximately 330 million acres (about twice the size of Texas), but today more than 85% of this forest has been cleared and what remains is highly fragmented. Despite its diminished state, the Atlantic Forest still ranks as a global conservation priority. Although it is just a small fraction of the size of the great Amazon rainforest, the Atlantic Forest still harbors a range of biological diversity similar to that of the Amazon. The Nature Conservancy, which has been working in the Atlantic Forest since 1991 with a wide range of partners, has an ambitious plan to protect and restore 30 million acres of this magnificent forest by 2015.
In 2014, Harley-Davidson renewed its commitment to the Conservancy with support to help restore another priority forest through the planting of 110,000 longleaf pine seedlings on the South Quay Sandhills Natural Area Preserve in southeastern Virginia. In October 2014, Harley-Davidson riders and corporate leaders worked side by side to place the initial 1,000 seedlings in the ground, with another 109,000 longleaf seedlings – totaling 110,000 longleaf trees or an estimated 200 acres – to be planted by the spring of 2015. A prized lumber species, longleaf is considered the “redwood of the east” due to its size and longevity. The longleaf pine ecosystem, which reaches across nine states from Virginia to Texas, is one of the Conservancy’s highest conservation priorities in North America. For thousands of years, longleaf pine covered more than 1 million acres across Virginia’s coastal plain alone (an area the size of Delaware); today fewer than 200 mature trees survive. But with support from Harley-Davidson and other partners, the Conservancy has undertaken reforestation projects in 12 U.S. states to help turn the tide on deforestation.
In addition to support from the Harley-Davidson Motor Company and the Harley-Davidson Foundation, Renew the Ride begins Harley-Davidson’s first global call to action for its riders to preserve the open road and the great outdoors for future generations of riders. Harley-Davidson is encouraging riders to raise awareness and funding for conservation by participating in Renew the Ride rides and other events through their local dealership or Harley Owners Group® chapter. Learn more at renewtheride.com.
Read the press release about the Harley-Davidson and Nature Conservancy partnership and the release on Harley-Davidson’s goal to help plant 50 million trees through Renew the Ride.
About Harley-Davidson Motor Company
Harley-Davidson Motor Company produces custom, cruiser and touring motorcycles and offers a complete line of Harley-Davidson motorcycle parts, accessories, riding gear and apparel, and general merchandise. For more information, visit Harley-Davidson's website at www.h-d.com.
About The Harley-Davidson Foundation
The Harley-Davidson Foundation seeks to meet the basic needs of the communities where we work, improve the lives of our stakeholders and encourage social responsibility. Established in 1993, The Foundation pursues partnerships with charitable organizations focused on education, health and environment. For more information, see www.h-d.com.