British Columbia is characterized by abundant forests, rugged Pacific coastlines, mountains, plateaus, and pristine lakes and rivers. However, in the summer of 2017, B.C. experienced it's worst wildfire season in history, with over 545,151 hectares burned. While devastating, we're hopeful that with a little patience and TLC these forests will make a comeback.
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Trees do so much for us! They sequester carbon, filter and absorb air pollutants, release oxygen for us to breathe, provide wildlife habitat, hold the soil together, grow food and medicine, protect us from UV rays, slow the flow of stormwater, and much more. Forests are essential pillars of terrestrial life.
But deforestation has taken a toll over the past few decades, primarily for commercial harvesting, development, and now increasingly due to the impacts of climate change. Global forest cover fell below four billion hectares in 2015 for the first time in human history. This loss of forests affects everything from wildlife and ecosystems to weather patterns and the water cycle. Forests, which cover 30% of Earth’s surface, are critically important to just about every aspect of nature, wildlife, and even people.
Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to make a positive impact. Our favorite? Plant more trees! Reforestation can restore damaged ecosystems, stabilize soil, support the water cycle, and slowly recover the vital ecosystem services that we all depend on. It can also bring people together, heal communities, and stimulate local economies. What’s not to love?
Trees help to stabilize our climate by absorbing and sequestering carbon via photosynthesis. In fact, one mature tree can sequester up to 48 lbs of carbon per year!
1.6 billion people depend on forests for their livelihood. So planting trees naturally brings people together, heals communities, and stimulates local economies.
Trees provide food, shade, and shelter for 1/2 of the world’s terrestrial flora and fauna and 3/4 of all birds. When we cut down their home, they often have nowhere to go.