Arbor Day Foundation Congratulates Longtime Partner Honored as 'Champion of the Earth'


LINCOLN, Nebraska (January 31, 2023) – A global changemaker was honored with the United Nations’ highest environmental award. The Arbor Day Foundation congratulates one of its longtime tree-planting partners, Constantino Aucca Chutas, who was recently named a U.N. Champion of the Earth.

Celebrated annually, the U.N. honors its Champions of Earth laureates in four categories including policy leadership, inspiration and action, entrepreneurial vision and science and innovation. Aucca, president and co-founder of Acción Andina, was recognized for inspiration and action.

“The Arbor Day Foundation is committed to working with a diverse network of tree planting partners all over the world and that includes seeking out leaders like Constantino to ensure trees are planted in the global forests that need them most,” said Dan Lambe, chief executive of the Arbor Day Foundation. “Constantino is a man of meaningful action, fueled by an unwavering dedication to conservation. The immense impact of his environmental advocacy will be felt for decades to come and we’re proud to call him a partner of the Arbor Day Foundation.”

Aucca has spent 30 years protecting forests in South America. His work is focused on the fight against climate change and biodiversity loss across the Andes Mountains. In partnership with U.S. nonprofit Global Forest Generation, Acción Andina was launched in 2018 and seeks to restore nearly 2.5 million acres of high Andean forests in Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia, Chile and Argentina.

Aucca’s commitment to reviving Andean ecosystems has helped empower indigenous communities to take the lead in the restoration of their native forests through tree plantings and establishing legally protected areas. This community-led approach, combined with a revival of ancestral Incan principles encouraging communal work and reciprocity, are the driving force that has united thousands of people under Acción Andina.

Learn more about how the Arbor Day Foundation and its partners are planting trees in global forests of greatest need.

About the Arbor Day Foundation

Founded in 1972, the Arbor Day Foundation is the world’s largest membership nonprofit organization dedicated to planting trees. With a focus in communities and forests of greatest need, the Foundation — alongside its more than 1 million members, supporters and valued partners — has helped to plant nearly 500 million trees in more than 50 countries. Guided by its mission to inspire people to plant, nurture and celebrate trees, the Arbor Day Foundation is committed to unlocking the power of trees to help solve critical issues facing people and the planet. Learn more about the impact of the Arbor Day Foundation at

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