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A short film by Lea Hejn


"The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago... The second best time is now!"

         Wired Roots is a short film about the firefighters who are risking their lives to combat illegal burns that are destroying the Brazilian Atlantic forest. This film conveys the incredible story of Mauricio Ruiz, the environmental activist who leads the movement to protect and restore this precious biome.


He is working with start-up Ecosia to harness the power of the global internet and to plant trees as we search online, so far they have planted 99 million trees. This film shows that we all have a choice to partake in the protection of our most crucial ecosystems. It is a story that shows that the solutions exist, and that environmental restoration is possible. It is a call to action for us to protect our natural carbon sinks and save the most biodiverse forests on our planet.

Mauricio Ruiz

Director of the Institute for Ambiental Protection (ITPA)


Mauricio started this NGO as a teenager. Today, he is working with the whole community of Miguel Pereira to plant trees to reforest the local Atlantic forest biome. So far they have planted 3 million trees. This led to the regeneration of 100s of biodiversity corridors that are crucial for biodiversity survival and reproduction. Restoring the forest is also vital to conserve the environmental services of the forest, potable water and clean air for the metropolitan area of Rio de Janeiro, and it's 13 millions inhabitants.

About me

I grew up in Denmark and France, my parents taught me worldly curiosity and deep respect for other cultures. I have since then lived in the UK and Brazil. I have been experimenting with filmmaking since my early teens. I would invent dreamlike scenarios, create characters, recreate famous scenes... there were endless possibilities.


In my early 20s, I decided to make environmental protection my life pursuit. I studied Environmental Policy & Climate Change Law in London. But I got frustrated with the disconnect between the diplomatic circles and the general public. I saw emotional storytelling portraying the magnificent planet that we inhabit as the key to bridge this gap.


So I decided to combine my filmmaking passion with my environmental mission. I pursued a Master’s in Wildlife Filmmaking at UWE in partnership with the BBC. My goal is to tell the stories of activists and innovators around the world, who are working on the forefront of the protection of the natural world. ‘Wired Roots’ is my first film, it recounts the story of activist  Mauricio Ruiz and his quest to reforest and protect the Brazilian Atlantic forest.

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