A trillion trees to combat climate change

A trillion trees to combat climate change

February 22, 2019

A trillion trees to combat climate change

Children are the main ambassadors of the 12-year-old Plant-for-the-Planet initiative whose objective is to plant trees to combat climate change.

In 2007, Felix Finkbeiner was nine as he showed his school mates the terrible consequences of climate change, and global warming in particular, for a school project. "If we humans do not do something about it, it will be a disaster", he concluded. Felix knew that trees are a valuable asset in the fight against climate change, and their photosynthesis can clean the air: "We just have to plant a million trees in each country in the world!" he concluded. He thus set out to plant trees in his school garden, starting a movement that became global: Plant-for-the-Planet Children’s Initiative has been active for over ten years, pursuing young Felix's objective. 

UNEP (the United Nations Environment Program) set an ambitious objective: planting 1000 billion new trees by 2020.




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A trillion trees in the world

The Plant-for-the-Planet official website is trilliontreecampaign.org. There is room for 600 billion trees on earth, but we need to plant trees in even larger numbers, since not all trees will survive. Let us not forget that we also need to protect the 170 billion existing trees that continue to face the risk of deforestation. If we were to achieve the campaign's objectives, trees could capture 25% of all human-generated CO2 emissions, thus reducing climate change, and keeping global temperature rises under the critical 2 °C threshold that would have catastrophic consequences for the planet, according to the experts. 

Anyone can plant trees and join the fight to combat climate change: simply register on the website and follow its directions. Individuals and organizations can thus contribute towards the final goal. 


Plant for the Planet today

Over 100,000 children and teenagers across the world followed Felix, who is now 20, and still a member of the association's management. Active in seven countries (including Italy), Plant for the Planet now leads several projects: in addition to the Trillion Tree campaign, the “Stop talking. Start planting” project featured celebrities, political leaders and Nobel laureates who plant trees as testimonials. “Words are not enough. We need facts” claim Plant for the Planet members.  Today's children are tomorrow's leaders: Plant for the Planet offers training worldwide, led by children who already took part in prior training sessions and can thus explain to their peers the dangers of climate change and how each child can help make change happen. It is an active kind of training: with the help of adults and professionals, during the training sessions children learn how to organize a meeting in their schools or towns and plant trees to reduce climate change.


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