Planting trees is one of the easiest ways to positively affect the environment.
A tree can help produce clean air, reduce carbon, and provide shelter to wildlife. With air pollution on the rise and wildlife on the decline, there’s never been a better time for reforestation.
Thankfully, many organzations and businesses are choosing to help out by putting a percentage of their profits aside to plant trees.
One of them is PlantWarrior, which plants a tree in the Amazon Rainforest for every bag of plant-based protein it sells*.
Here are the top five reasons we need those trees!
1. 80 percent of our forests are already gone
Approximately 80 percent of our forests have been destroyed since the 1900’s, causing a 52 percent reduction in land-based wildlife.
If we keep going at the current rate, scientists predict we’ll see 28,000 species go extinct over the next 25 years. But the fight isn’t over yet. The Paris 2020 Agreement included pledges from governments to plant trees, which is a huge stride for the environment.
We still need to make more progress - but it’s a start.
2. Half of our oxygen comes from trees
Research suggest that trees are responsible for around 50 percent of the oxygen on the planet, with the other half coming from the ocean. This shows how important our trees are; as well as the ocean.
As pollution increases, we are beginning to see the populations of phytoplankton, kelp, and algal plankton drop. These ocean-based plants produce oxygen through photosynthesis similar to trees.
3. Forests contain 80 percent of the world's terrestrial biodiversity
What is terrestrial biodiversity? It’s basically everything that is alive on land. This includes plants, animals, fungi, and bacteria.
The most diverse forests in the world are rainforests, where temperature is warm and rainfall is abundant.
Approximately 50 square miles of forest are lost each year - showing that we need to not just rebuild, but also try to reduce the amount of resources we use too.
4. 1 in 4 medicines stem from rainforest ingredients
Experts say that four square miles of rainforest usually contains around 1,500 different types of plants and 750 types of different trees.
This intense biodiversity causes many organisms to develop chemicals, which are often collected and researched by leading pharmaceutical companies.
Today, 25 percent of western pharmaceuticals are derived from rainforest ingredients, and 121 prescription drugs come from plant-derived sources.
5. 1 tree removes 48 pounds of carbon per year
Trees recycle carbon dioxide into oxygen. As our carbon levels continue to rise, the importance of our trees continues to grow.
An adult tree can remove 48 pounds of carbon dioxide every year, but the carbon doesn’t disappear. It stays in the tree, and when deforestation takes place, we don’t just destroy the regulators of our climate; we release the carbon they have stored too.
When you look up at the stars, you realise we are just floating on a rock in the middle of space.
Life isn’t on every planet, but it is on ours.
Everything on this planet is in it together in a battle to survive, so let’s not take it for granted. Let’s plant trees, fight deforestation, and take care of our planet.
*Gone are the days of simply buying brands because they are convenient. Now you have the chance to make a difference just by choosing what brands you support.