It has been many months since the Size of Herefordshire website went online, but we still do not have a large public presence. We have had no mentions in the Hereford Times or BBC Hereford and Worcester, let alone the national media and even in the run-up to the Paris Climate Change Conference, we remain low profile. What is going on, you may ask?
What's going on is the development of a Size of Herefordshire online interactive website, whereby people will be able choose and `buy' a ten hectare square of the county for a fiver. These 10 hectares will mean that an equivalent 10 hectares of Peruvian rainforest will be protected, the £5 donated being divided between the Forest Peoples' Programme and Cool Earth, two charities who work in the north east of Peru aiding the indigenous people to protect their forest against loggers and miners and palm-oil planters.
The software engineering for this interactive site is very complex and it is taking specialists PragSys of Cardiff sometime to perfect. But once it is working, Herefordians will be able to buy their favourite spot of their county, be it a village, a parish or a beauty spot.
Taking online and offline donations together, the Size of Herefordshire has already raised about £5000 - from some generous and big-hearted people. So 10,000 hectares of rainforest are already protected. When the county's complete 218,000 hectares are `bought', our job will have been done and an area of rainforest the size of our much-loved county will be under protection.
We hope now to go public and launch in the New Year. Then we will try to make a lot of noise.
So please, watch this space.