How everyone can combat climate change: all it takes is planting a tree

Project Drawdown is a group of researchers, policy makers, activists and business stakeholders who work on mapping, measuring, and communicating the most impactful solutions to stop global warming. The top of their list for emission-cutting techniques includes management of refrigerants, onshore wind power, and food waste avoidance—with a potential for reducing emissions by more than 80 gigatonnes.

Image credit: i-Stock

However, an often overlooked weapon against greenhouse gas emissions is in fact both powerful and cost-efficient: The forest. Crowther Lab of ETH Zurich applied machine learning algorithms to count around three trillion trees in the world; and to locate, at the same time, areas with a reforestation potential to support another trillion trees. This would translate to hundreds of gigatons of carbon captured from the atmosphere, wiping out a decade of anthropogenic emissions.

In view of these findings, the rate of deforestation in the tropics becomes even more alarming. The United Nations have renamed their Billion Tree Campaign to Trillion Tree Campaign. They support individuals and organizations in their tree-planting projects, and so far they have registered 13.61 billion trees planted around the world. This is a fight against desertification, deforestation, soil degradation and, effectively, time. But it is a fight that is possible for everyone to support: simply, plant a tree, and take care of it. Now.

Also read: How to Beat the Agony of a Dying Phone Battery

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