The La Cruz Habitat Protection Project

Deforestation is a critical problem in Mexico, affecting over half the country’s forests and negatively impacting ecosystems, watersheds and people’s well-being. La Cruz Habitat Protection Project (LCHPP) is a successful Mexican project that is responsible for planting 3 million seedling pine and oyamel fir trees in and around the Monarch Biosphere Reserve and its buffer zone. Jose Luis Alvarez Alcala began the project in 1997 and has been working ever since to restore old fields to sustainable forest to improve soil hydrology and economic standards in these rural communities. La Cruz Habitat Protection Project, Inc. is a U.S. non-profit organization dedicated to restoring and managing forests in Michoacán, México and beyond by working in close partnership with LCHPP-Mexico. LCHPP provides trees free of charge to willing communities and land owners who agree to plant and to care for their new forests. Some of these new forests become plantations from which wood will provide an economic resource for families who live in poverty. Training is given on care and sustainable harvest so the new forests will continue to protect fragile mountainside soils, and provide wildlife habitat and livelihoods for local families for generations into the future.