Secure Forests – a new company protecting forests across the globe

A new business, Secure Forests CIC, has been set up in the South West to monitor and protect forests around the globe using acoustic and satellite monitoring technology.

Headquartered in Mount Edgcumbe Country Park on the Rame Peninsula, Secure Forests is currently monitoring acoustic sensors in the canopy of a tropical forest in Belize, to help protect from illegal loggers and poachers.

Richard Pyshorn, Managing & Operations Director of Secure Forests CIC said: “In the recent G7 summit held here in Cornwall, global leaders agreed commitments to halt and reverse biodiversity, and tackle deforestation. With the livestreaming acoustic sensors, we can hear chainsaws, vehicles, gunshots and, falling trees at home here in Cornwall, some 5,000 miles away from Belize.

“Our technology captures both natural and unnatural sounds. Then a machine-learning algorithm sifts out the sounds that we are particularly interested in – like a chainsaw or a vehicle – and sends an alert text message to the rangers’ phones, their operations centre, and our team here in Cornwall. We then collaborate with the rangers on an appropriate response.”

In addition to the acoustic sensors developed by US non-profit Rainforest Connection, Secure Forests will be testing even more technology in the months to come, with the incorporation of a data fusion platform called Earth Ranger. This technology platform was developed with funding by the late Paul Allen, co-founder of Microsoft. It is provided free to approved projects as ‘philanthropic technology’.

Richard continues: “Earth Ranger means all sensor alerts and ranger movements are plotted on one map. Eventually the technology is able to generate predictive analysis from joining the dots between massive amounts of data. This enables a more strategic approach to forest security and conservation by directing rangers to areas potentially at risk of a threat before it happens.”

Secure Forests are pursuing funding that will allow them to expand their innovative approach to more at-risk forests around the world. They are also working with veteran support organisations to develop training courses for former military personnel interested in getting into the burgeoning industry of forest security.

Chris Minty MBE said: “During 2020, more than 12 million hectares of tropical tree coverage was lost globally which represents a 12% increase compared to 2019. The longer we wait to stop illegal logging the more likely it is that our natural carbon sinks will be cut down or go up in smoke. Our aspiration is for British military veterans trained here in Cornwall to be deployed around the world to help forest defenders in their vital work – securing forests and the biodiversity and carbon within them. We like to think of it as making a transition from national security to natural security.”

For more information on Secure Forests and their work, visit