A “Trillion Tree Campaign: The Plant-for-the-Planet App”

Contact:

Verena Weber verena.weber@plant-for-the-planet.org
Support: support@trilliontreecampaign.org

https://www.trilliontreecampaign.org/
https://www.facebook.com/plantfortheplanet/
https://www.instagram.com/plantfortheplanet_official/
https://twitter.com/PftP_int
https://www.youtube.com/PlantForThePlanet

 

Related Groups and Projects:

https://www.1t.org/

https://www.arborday.org

http://www.greenbeltmovement.org

https://trees.org

https://www.trilliontrees.org/

https://www.woodlandtrust.org.uk

https://www.wwf.org.uk/what-we-do/projects/trillion-trees

Mission:

The current goal of the children and youth initiative is to plant a trillion trees worldwide. Trees are the cheapest and most effective means of binding CO2, allowing us more time to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to zero and mitigate the climate crisis.

In 2011, the UN Environment handed over the Billion Tree Campaign, along with the official world tree counter, to the youth-led Plant-for-the-Planet Foundation. As the children’s aim is now to plant a trillion trees, they transformed the Billion Tree Campaign into the Trillion Tree Campaign and developed an interactive online tool that motivates others to get involved in planting: https://weplant.app

For the first time ever, some of the best community-led tree planting projects from 20+ countries have come together to deliver a massive boost to the world’s reforestation efforts. Now, with the Plant-for-the-Planet App, everyone can plant trees worldwide with just a few clicks. 100 per cent of the money raised goes directly to the tree planters.

Greta Thunberg said: “It is simple. We need to protect, re-store and fund nature.” The new Plant for the Planet App allows you to do just that. For just €3, you can plant a tree in Brazil. For just €100, you can plant 1,000 trees and help restore the landscape of Indonesia.

You don’t have a sapling at hand? Or want to avoid getting dirt under your fingernails? The Plant-for-the-Planet App is your way to help nature recover by selecting from 50 hand-selected reforestation projects from developing countries. The benefits of tree planting are not just for nature, they are also a vital source of income for poor communities. Many more projects are coming.

Just select your favourite project. Donate. The trees are planted for you. No excuses. Each tree adds to the World Tree Counter.

The app was built over two years by seven young people from Plant-for-the-Planet Foundation under the leadership of Sagar Aryal (24), who has been planting trees with Plant-for-the-Planet for over 10 years, as one of 81,000 children and youth from 73 countries.

The Plant-for-the-Planet Foundation aimed to plant 100 million trees by 2030 through their project in the Yucatan-Peninsula. But they realised that 10,000 projects of that size are necessary to restore a trillion trees, and therefore decided to focus on sharing their tools with a multitude of other projects to help them scale up their work – that’s what this app is about. There are no fees or costs for donors, tree-planting NGOs or anyone else. This app helps to implement the excellent goals of the Bonn Challenge – a global effort to bring 150 million hectares of the world’s deforested and degraded land into restoration by 2020, and 350 million hectares by 2030 – by creating a positive chain reaction. More than 10,000 people signed up to the app in the development phase.

This project could not have happened without the advice, guidance and support of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP).

About Plant-for-the-Planet

The Plant-for-the-Planet children and youth initiative was launched in January 2007 after Wangari Maathai and the UNEP had called to action via the Billion Tree Campaign. At the end of his school presentation about the current climate crisis, nine-year-old Felix Finkbeiner announced his vision to his classmates: “Let’s plant one million trees in every country on earth!”

So far, more than 13 billion trees in 193 countries have been planted. The children of Plant-for-the-Planet teach and empower others to become Climate Justice Ambassadors. More than 81,000 children from 73 countries are already participating.

On the Yucatán Peninsula in Mexico, Plant-for-the-Planet plants a tree every 15 seconds. This project demonstrates just how easy it is to make planting trees so effective on a large scale. The initiative uses its own products (i.e. The Change Chocolate) and campaigns (such as “Stop talking. Start planting.”) in order to plant trees and motivate others to get involved in planting.

Why a trillion trees? https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/jul/04/planting-billions-trees-best-tackle-climate-crisis-scientists-canopy-emissions

After you have read this introduction, click the blue “View Coming Events” calendar button and you may find opportunities to participate in saving our world. If your group is planning a relevant event, we welcome your contribution to the calendar.
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For those of you interested in the Trillion Trees Initiative, I have collected some recent articles on the subject. These articles are listed below. Some of these article touch on recent political initiatives connected to mass tree planting, such as the US aiming to plant billions of trees annually, as well promotion of the trillion trees initiative at the recent Davos forum in Switzerland.

Of note is that some scientists have called into question the veracity of the claims that planting a trillion trees will contain a decade of carbon dioxide emissions – or as one study alleged, “planting a trillion trees could capture more than a third of all the greenhouse gases humans have released since the industrial revolution” (see Justine Calma’s article for more). Several scientists have further noted that planting trees in certain ecosystems and environments where trees are not naturally found – such as on certain grasslands and snowy slopes – may cause further environmental damage and degradation. Arctic and snowy environments were particularly noted in Justine Calma’s article (in the Verge) as per the impacts of the albedo effect increasing warming rates due to previously snowy areas (reflecting heat and light) suddenly becoming darker (due to increased vegetation) which would reflect heat. Optimizing tree planting locations has been a subject of debate for several years.

Further concern has arisen that focusing on tree planting initiatives as an alleged solution will reduce much needed attention on the limiting greenhouse gas emissions in the first place.

Rogers’ article in Wired additionally discusses sociopolitical aspects of the Trillion Trees Campaign, including investor, politician, and popular opinion on the notions of regenerative agriculture and trees.

Here are the articles (arranged alphabetically by author(s) or organizational name):

Title: Planting 1 Trillion Trees Might Not Actually Be A Good Idea
Author: Calma, Justine
Publication(s): The Verge (Science)
Date: 31 January 2020
Link: https://www.theverge.com/2020/1/31/21115862/davos-1-trillion-trees-controversy-world-economic-forum-campaign
Notes: Discusses emerging and recent critiques of the trillion tree campaigns / initiatives.

Title: Planting 1.2 Trillion Trees Could Cancel Out a Decade of CO2 Emissions, Scientists Find
Author: E360 Digest [Yale Environment 360]
Publication(s): Yale Environment 360
Date: 20 February 2019
Link: https://e360.yale.edu/digest/planting-1-2-trillion-trees-could-cancel-out-a-decade-of-co2-emissions-scientists-find

Title: Is The Trillion Trees Campaign Good News?
Author: “Joshi”
Publication(s): Ecosia Blog
Date: 7 February 2020
Link: https://blog.ecosia.org/trillion-trees/
Notes:

Title: Trying To Plant A Trillion Trees Won’t Solve Anything
Author: Rogers, Adam
Publication(s): Wired
Date: 25 October 2019
Link: https://www.wired.com/story/trees-regenerative-agriculture-climate-change/

Title: U.S. Would Plant Billions Of Trees Annually Under GOP Bill
Author: Taylor, Vanessa
Publication(s): Mic
Date: 3 February 2020
Link: https://www.mic.com/p/us-would-plant-billions-of-trees-annually-under-gop-bill-21769496

Title: The Pros and Cons of Planting Trees to Address Global Warming
Author: Yale Climate Connections
Publication(s): EcoWatch
Date: 19 March 2020
Link: https://www.ecowatch.com/planting-trees-climate-crisis-2645536299.html

I think there should be more encouragement for municipalities to implement tree-planting programs. This could delegate some of the coordination and maintenance responsibility to a regional level. Get the councillors and mayors involved. Perhaps provincial / territorial / federal governments could allocate funding and coordinate partnerships with tree nurseries for programs to be implemented on the municipal level.

In Toronto, much of the urban forest is being attacked by pests or being damaged by large storms and not being replaced at the same rate that trees are being removed. Researchers additionally have identified that invasive species are taking over sensitive ecosystems, such as the ravines. We should be planting and replanting more trees!

Is anyone talking about fire prevention when you discuss planting trees? The bush fires in Australia and California suggest that we should pay as much attention to preventing these dangers as planting more. But I don’t know how to prevent fires. Are there any particular principles we should be noticing?

Are you referring to rural, semi-rural, or urban settings? I think that there would be distinct challenges for fire-fighting in each of these environments. In the Australia and California context, the eucalyptus trees pose a specific, unique challenge – due to their explosive and volatile oils – which burn hotter than other tree species.

On a side note – here is an interesting article about challenges of forest fires near nuclear facilities – which pose a particularly difficult and significant challenge. This article dates to 11 August 2010 – though is quite relevant still.

Link: https://www.americansecurityproject.org/thinking-the-unthinkable-fires-in-russia-fan-nuclear-fears/

How do you know what kind of trees to plant in a particular region? I understand that it makes a lot of difference in the rate of survival. Do you buy the seedlings or do you plant seeds and watch them for a couple of years before transplanting them where you expect them to grow? Do you water and weed them?

Jerry, another factor that influences the growth rate of forests is how densely they are planted and how diversely. Mixing a bunch of species together quite closely is beneficial, and even speeds up the growth rate. I understand that trees are sort of social creatures. They even help each other (or at least their special friends) by sharing things through their roots when a beloved neighbor is in need! I read a book about it a year ago but can’t remember the title.

Linda, you sound like one of those weirdos who talk to their plants while watering them and claim that they grow better that way. (It’s all right to do that, so long as you don’t hear them talking back to you.)

Love the app! It´s actually very easy to use and gives you a nice overview on where you can donate trees to.
Excited to see you guys grow! Hopefully you and this app will get more attention soon.

This is such a great idea! I personally think this is one of the best ways to actually do something about the climate crisis. I myself already planted 50 trees with the new App. #stoptalkingstartplanting

My school class and i are so proud of our own little forest in Yucatán! We just sold 200 pieces of cake and donated a tree for each one.

Planting trees for the future – a very meaningful initiative! Finally there is something you can actively DO yourself against the climate crisis. I will definitely download the Plant-for-the-Planet App and plant with you! 🙂

Hi, Verena. Keep us posted on how your trees are doing, please. What kind of trees are you planting, and where? Will you keep watching over them? Blessings!

Hi Metta,
here you can find everything about our Planting Project on the Yucatán-Penisula: https://www.plant-for-the-planet.org/en/about-us/planting-locations
Best, Verena