June 14, 2016 2 min read

From a young age, the message of peace has always rang far louder than that of conflict.  When given a choice between fighting and resolution – for me – the latter wins near every time.

Of course, there are cases when we need to fight for or defend something—but perhaps more often, we need to take conscious action.

So, when it comes to climate change, I have taken a vow to act rather than fight.

I’ve heard both terms used when discussing the part we can play in developing long-term solutions, but I sincerely believe that we will get a lot further as a collective if we stop the fighting, and turn to action.

So how do we act on climate? 

At the beginning of this series on the 6 pillars of tree planting, I shared a link to a list of 101 simple acts that I created to help you generate positive impact, and lighten your footprint on the Earth.

These acts are a combination of mindful decisions made on a daily basis that can ultimately impact our environment. Although they are in no particular or fixed order, planting a tree is second on the list.

So what does tree planting have to do with climate? 

I’m glad you asked. 

Here are five solid reasons that planting a tree is a way to act on climate.

  1. Air: Trees absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen, giving humans and animals clean air to breathe and reducing the amount of carbon in our atmosphere;
  2. Water: Trees reduce the impact of flooding caused by natural disasters via their unique root systems.
  3. Biodiversity: Trees host a rich variety of species, strengthening the health of ecosystems, and making them more adaptable to a changing climate.
  4. Health: Sustainably sourcing plant medicine from healthy forests can have a positive impact on the human system and the ecosystem, since it reduces the demand for the chemical medications that ultimately end up in our waterways, affecting aquatic and human populations.
  5. Economy: The money saved and earned from tree planting can be integrated into economies to fund other climate solutions like renewable energy infrastructure.

While I mentioned in a previous post that biodiversity demonstrates interconnectedness, the sixth pillar—climate regulation—represents the whole.

So while we can get caught up in somewhat complicated carbon footprint calculations in an effort to determine how many trees we need to plant to offset our daily commute or the flight we just took, let’s keep tree planting simple.

Plant a tree & take note of the positive ripple effect that it creates.  And while it may seem as though the more you plant, the greater the positive impact, there's a little saying that reminds us that this isn't always the case: quality over quantity.

The right tree, in the right place can make a world of difference. Now that we’ve wrapped up the series of the 6 pillars of tree planting, it’s time to consider other topics like how we can work together to plant more trees!

We plant trees on 4 continents around the world. Want to choose where yours are planted?

by Leah Feor


Founder, Simply Sustainable


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