Why do you save and plant trees instead of doing something else?
Simply put, trees are the superheros of planet Earth. While their environmental positives are well known, they also help to support countless species of plant and animal life in some of the planet's most diverse ecosystems.
Most people are aware that saving and planting trees is an excellent way to support the environment. In fact, they are the most efficient consumers of carbon dioxide on the planet.
Each and every year, one acre of trees absorbs six tons of carbon dioxide from the environment.
Furthermore, they help to fight against climate change, reignite natural water cycles, mitigate the spread of deserts, and revitalize "unusable" areas into fertile farmlands and woods.
Bottom line: deforestation is the leading cause of habitat destruction around the world. By destroying trees, humans are forcing countless species--many of them endangered--into a fight for survival.
By conserving existing trees and planting new ones we can reverse this habitat destruction almost immediately, giving these animals a new chance at life.
From the orangutans in Indonesia, to the lemurs in Madagascar, to the sloths in Brazil--we can stand as a powerful and positive force against humans destroying their homes and their way of life.
Tragically, roughly half of the Earth's trees have disappeared in the past 100 years resulting in worldwide devastation, desertification, flooding, and land loss.
Planting trees helps to raise the quality of life of Earth's people significantly, especially in less developed areas. By producing nutritious, fresh forest goods they support local economies and the health of the people who live in them.
Instead of being forced to migrate for food and livable conditions, local men and women are able to find dependable and enjoyable income that provides livable wages from the economic activities created from planting trees. This allows these parents to send their children to school, buy medicine and other crucial health supplies, build shelters, and rise from extreme poverty.
Furthermore, trees provide life and a stable ecosystem for countless species--many of which are now endangered due to rampant deforestation. They also contribute geologically, helping to stabilize coastlines and mountainsides.
By saving and planting trees you do many, many things:
- Protect existing habitats and expand them so animals can have a fighting change at survival
- Defend against climate change
- Revitalize ecosystems
- Provide nutrition, employment, education, and healthcare assistance to local inhabitants
- Stabilize local economies and the politics that go along with it
Trees truly are superheros. To learn about even more reasons, view the benefits of planting trees.
What is CO2, and how am I making it?
Every year, our planet grows warmer from what's known as the greenhouse effect caused by all the extra carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. This carbon overload is caused by burning fossil fuels (like coal, oil and gas) or by cutting and burning forests.
The level of CO2 currently in our air is far more than needed and is contributing up to 26% of harmful greenhouse gasses.
Did you know that the average carbon footprint of a person living in America is 2 tons per month?
The number is often much higher for those living in urban areas! It is important to realize that no matter how much we strive to live an environmentally-conscious lifestyle (and we should!), we still create an unavoidable carbon footprint.
Unfortunately, having a carbon footprint is an unavoidable aspect of daily modern life. From the vehicles we drive and the clothes we wear, to the technology we use to make our lives simpler and the processing of our food and water—all of it contributes to your carbon footprint.
While there are many different ways to offset carbon, our focus at 8 Billion Trees is to plant specific, native species of trees to sequester carbon.
What is the negative carbon impact of each person annually?
In most developed countries, the average person creates 10-20 tons of carbon dioxide each year. That means each year, it takes 4-8 acres of trees to offset the carbon pollution from a single person in a developed country. That is a total of 400 to 4,000 trees needed.
Including all countries in the world, the current average is 5 tons of carbon dioxide produced each year per person. Even at this smaller number, it takes 2 acres or 300 to 1,000 trees to offset the pollution of each person on earth...each year.
Helping to do your part by offsetting your personal pollution truly makes a difference.
How can I offset my carbon footprint?
You can offset your footprint with carbon sequestration.
Carbon sequestration is the removal of carbon from the environment through the capture of carbon dioxide--which trees are extremely good at!
As trees grow, they capture or “pull” carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and release oxygen--storing the absorbed carbon in their tree trunk and branches as they grow.
The goal of carbon sequestration is to capture harmful carbon dioxide from the atmosphere in order to slow and reverse atmospheric pollution, with the end goal of mitigating and reversing man-made global warming and climate change.
What are carbon offsets, and how do they work?
Carbon offsets are defined as actions that cause a reduction of carbon emissions, or other greenhouse gases, in order to negate actions that produce your carbon footprint.
Essentially, an offset is the balancing point. For example, if you use 20 plastic shopping bags a week for one year, those bags generated 423 pounds of carbon emissions (to manufacture). To “offset” that part of your footprint, you can do something… such as planting three trees.
What is the carbon offset membership?
Our carbon offset membership focuses on planting hyper-carbon-sequestering trees that have been shown to directly offset more carbon than other species.
The tree species we utilize most often is the mangrove tree, in Madagascar.
In addition to being powerful at offsetting carbon, these gorgeous trees also provide habitats for critically endangered animals—specifically Lemurs and Mouse Lemurs.
Sadly, the IUCN recently announced that Lemurs and Mouse Lemurs were the most endangered of all vertebrates.
With a carbon offsetting membership, members can erase the carbon footprint they continually generate… completely… while also saving these special animals and conserving old growth forests every month.
Where do you plant and conserve trees?
We have a dedicated article explaining just this. Click here to read more on where we plant and conserve trees.
How many trees has 8 Billion Trees helped to plant and conserve?
Since launching November 2018, 8 Billion Trees has planted over 1,246,911 trees and has conserved over 166,000 acres of biodiverse Amazon rainforest.
Additionally, we fund a Wildlife Conservation Center near the Amazon Rainforest in the Brazil State of Tocantins where we rescue and provide veterinary care for hurt and displaced animals.
How can I be sure the trees won't be cut down?
A truly-effective tree-planting operation relies on educating the local community directly, and teaching them that conserving the forest is not only beneficial for the environment and habitats--it is beneficial for them as well.
This is because in many cases, the true cause of deforestation revolves around economic issues and poverty. Locals around the world illegally destroy forests as a way of survival. But through showing them innovative ways to plant, we can educate them on how to plant trees that will provide produce and resources for them, while conserving existing forests.
In this way, we are able to treat the cause of deforestation and not just the symptoms. It also makes sure that trees being planted aren't cut down and provide a long-lasting impact on the environment.
Additionally, some of the trees are specifically designed to be trimmed periodically to provide sustainable tree products. These are species that are planted with the intent to coppice--trim and cut back occasionally to spur more growth.
The trees we plant with your support are not only permanent. They are constantly growing and expanding and help provide sustainable resources year after year that will stop deforestation at its roots.
How do I know the trees are actually getting planted?
Making sure our trees are being planted is our number one priority. Because of this, there are several steps we take. Our partners have photo stations along planting sites and utilize GPS coordinate tagging when taking pictures. This allows us to see--very literally--the precise location where the trees are being planted.
Furthermore, 8 Billion Trees asks for pictures and videos of the planting sites on a regular basis to check up on the work of our partners.
Additionally, we encourage all of our supporters to review our resources page showing legitimate documentation on our tree operations around the world.
What happens after the trees have been planted?
They flourish and grow!
We don't simply plant the trees and hope for the best. A large part of our process is helping to educate farmers and growers on proper reforestation so they are equipped with not only the "how" but the "why" as well.
This includes teaching them what should and shouldn't be done, what can be cut down and what can't, how to care for the trees on an ongoing basis, and how to care for the environment at the same time.
The entire tree-planting process helps to create a sense of stewardship, responsibility, and ownership in the growers. Instilling this deep pride in the tree growers helps to ensure trees become an integral part of the local environment.
Lastly, reforestation sites are concurrently checked on to make sure there's no funny business going on.
How soon after my purchase are the trees planted and conserved?
We guarantee that your trees will be planted within 180 days of your purchase. It often occurs much sooner than this, however.
The precise time of when trees are planted depends on several factors including local climates and weather cycles. We focus our planting efforts in Earth's hotspots where severe deforestation is causing irreversible damage. Sometimes there is a delay as we wait for the growing season in these locations.
And your trees will be conserved almost immediately--each time you make a contribution it allows us to expand our conservation efforts in real-time so that we can fight habitat destruction now, not next month or next year.
What happens to the trees if I cancel my purchase or ask for a refund?
As a social enterprise we are committed to making our dream a reality. For every canceled order or refund we pledge to cover the cost of the trees and make sure they are planted and conserved regardless.
How long does it take for trees to grow to their full size?
The time required for a tree to reach maturity depends on several factors, some of which include the species type and where the tree is planted.
Do you plant only native species?
The issue of planting invasive species is one we take very seriously. By using only species that are native to a given area, many of these issues can be avoided.
One very important way we do this is by only using seeds from local plants--not ordering them from somewhere else. This maintains the native species' integrity and prevents us from making a negative environmental impact.
Additionally, sometimes a species of tree may be selected for its fast growth potential or shade coverage--such as banana trees--which then paves the way for more species to be planted. In this way, we can help to restore the natural biodiversity of the land and encourage the growth of a wide range of different flora.
Can you plant trees in my area?
No. Unfortunately we cannot provide trees to individuals for planting due to fulfillment and customs boundaries.
There are many different factors we use when determining where to plant, including the weather, local climate cycle, tree availability by species type, local need, and hotspot classification.
Can I pick which country you plant the trees in?
At the time being we do not have the ability to allow supporters to choose the precise location of where their trees will be planted. Where we plant is determined by where we can have the largest impact and where animals are in desperate need of reforestation for their habitats. You can learn more about where we plant trees by clicking here.
How much does it cost to plant each tree?
The price of trees are extremely variable and depend on a large number of factors, from the species type, to the location of planting, to logistics and handling costs. While trees can provide valuable products and resources like fruits and building materials, many of the trees we plant directly support locals and their families.
The value of a fully mature tree ranges between $1,000 to $10,000. That means for every subscriber or purchase, over the long term we are able to make a significant impact worth billions of dollars to the environment.
Furthermore, in 50 years one tree:
- Creates $30,000 in new oxygen
- Produces $35,000 of recycled water
- Removes $60,000 of pollution from the air
Can you support my tree planting group or charity?
We are always looking for new ways to get involved with and support the planting of trees!
Please reach out to us from our contact page.
Where are you located?
Our headquarters is in southern Nevada where we operate 5 days a week throughout all seasons of the year.
Can you tell me more about your organization?
Absolutely! Please visit our about page.
When was 8 Billion Trees started?
8 Billion Trees was founded in 2018 by Michael Powell and Jon Chambers when they put forth their own money to begin making the dream of planting and conserving 8 billion trees a reality.
Since then, over 1,246,911 trees have already been planted along with the conservation of 166,000 acres of existing forest trees.
Who do you partner with?
A full list of the groups and charities we currently support can be seen here.
Are you a charity?
8 Billion Trees is defined as a social enterprise, not a charity.
What does this mean? Simply put, all revenue and profit is reinvested and used to further the company's mission of planting 8 billion trees around the globe.
We sponsor multiple groups that are committed to conservation efforts. By focusing on what we do best--spreading awareness on the issues--we are able to empower these groups around the world to go above and beyond.
While these groups are largely underfunded, they do amazing work--and that's where we come in to make sure they have everything they need and more to get the job done.
All proceeds from sales and subscriptions are used to fund all aspects of 8 Billion Trees: spreading awareness through marketing, paying our employees liveable wages, providing employment to thousands below the poverty line who help us to plant, and of course conserving and planting trees!
And unlike a strictly for-profit company, our social mission of planting 8 billion trees is our main priority. In addition to large personal donations from co-founders Michael and Jon, we reinvest profits back into the furthering the company's mission.
Please click here to learn more about the amazing groups and charities we partner with and support them with your donations directly.
Interested to learn more on why we aren't a charity? We've created an entire article explaining more.
Why don't you just plant and save trees and not sell anything?
We love the idea of just planting trees without selling clothing items, but that model simply isn't sustainable. Planting and saving billions of trees requires a lot of money, from the actual trees and hiring farmers to spreading awareness through large marketing efforts. As a social enterprise, we needed to find a way to help offset the large costs of maintaining a global tree planting operation.
And if we do say...we think our products are pretty awesome!
We had very in-depth discussions for weeks about launching as a charity instead, but found that we could grow more efficiently and make a much larger impact by becoming a social enterprise. And with Earth facing a deforestation crisis like its never before seen, time is one thing we are short on. Many endangered animals don't have much time left--unless someone acts now they will be gone forever.
Can I volunteer to help plant trees?
While we do not currently have any volunteer events on the calendar, we are planning a full schedule for 2020 and beyond. As a new company we are always looking to make a greater impact, so there's always room for new ideas and improvements.
In some tree planting locations it is important to give locals in extreme poverty the opportunity for employment that allows them to pay for food and better shelter, send their kids to school, pay for medical care, and rise from poverty.
Employing locals also allows us to plant more efficiently where travel and distance would otherwise become obstacles and create a large carbon footprint.
The best way to help our mission is to spread the word and tell everyone that you can about 8 billion trees and our dream to plant and conserve 8,000,000,000 trees around the globe!
We are also considering planning trips where supporters will have the opportunity to travel with our team to locations all around the world where trees are being planted. If this is something you think we should make happen, please contact us and let us know!
What if I have more questions?
We would love to hear from you! Please use our contact form to reach us.