Four billion trees… 3


The from the United Nations Environment Program announced it yesterday: four billion trees have been planted so far. This happens only a few months after reaching the three billion hallmark…

After reaching the one billion mark in 2007, the UNEP decided to plant seven billion around the world before the Copenhagen meeting which will decide of the future of the Kyoto Protocol.

To conclude: the UNEP will plant one tree for every twitterer who follows www.twitter.com/UNEPandYou by 5 June, World Environment Day. Don’t hesitate to follow them !


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3 thoughts on “Four billion trees…

  • Kiashu

    A billion trees is actually not a huge amount. If they’re spaced so you can lie down between the trees, then you can fit one in each ten square metres, or 1,000 per hectare (100m x 100m area), or 100,000 per square kilometre, so that one billion trees take up 10,000 square kilometres. Again, that sounds like a lot until you realise that through the 1990s, we lost about 94,000 sq km of forest cover worldwide each year [source].

    What’s needed is for all of us to take responsibility and plant some trees. You can get seedlings up to 30cm high for a few dollars or Euros, and plant them in your yard, in public parks, in nature strips along roads, along railway tracks, high tension power line land and highways, and so on.

    About one per season per person, or around one per month per household, this would be a fair number. Of the 6.7 billion people in the world, probably 2 billion have the money and access to nurseries to manage this. So we could see 2 billion x 4 = 8 billion trees a year planted, equivalent to 80,000 square kilometres of forest. That combined with the UN effort balances the forest lost in the developing world.

    The presence of trees in your neighbourhood has many benefits, which include increased property values, more money spent on businesses in that area, moderating local temperature and providing shade so that less heating and cooling need be used in homes (saving money and emissions), cleaning up the local air, brings in birds, causes cars to slow down in the street, calming children and helping them concentrate, makes the street quieter, reduces crime and domestic violence, and… well, it just looks nicer than concrete.

    Don’t leave it up to government and UN, go and plant a tree today. And another one tomorrow. And then another.

  • Edouard Post author

    Interesting calculations.

    I once read that planting trees in our climate won’t compensate the trees cut in tropical regions. I perhaps could find back the source. (TreeHugger?)

    I agree on trees. I can’t plant trees in my garden – our garden would be more correct – as it is tiny but I get the idea. (it’s way too small. have a look at my flickr ^^)

    I bought a tiny spruce sappling with a youth magazine fifteen years ago. it’s in a pot waiting for the moment I will plant it in a place where I will be able to take care of it.

    I knew trees were essential for Nature but I didn’t know they had such an impact on us, mere humans…

    One day I will be able to plant trees. Once I will have a place to plant them ^^

    Note: I am listening to Ray Charles… You may don’t care, but I am LOVING his songs ! (feeling GREAT) 🙂

  • Kiashu

    The science on trees and carbon is mixed. The best consensus I can make out is,

    – trees in temperate areas take in the most carbon, compared to tropical or cold areas
    – most the tree’s carbon absorption happens in the first twenty years of its life, as it does most of its growth
    – trees in a big forest absorb more carbon than trees sitting around on their own somewhere (like a street corner).

    There are other things, too, like the fact that 100 x 100 hectare forests have less biodiversity than a single 10,000ha forest, and so on.

    But whatever: planting trees never does harm.

    You don’t need a backyard to plant trees. You just need a piece of land somewhere. Most cities have some public land that isn’t used much; I already gave examples. If you link us to your neighbourhood on google earth I will find some places you can plant trees 😀