"Trees are the Answer!"
I have always believed that trees are wonderful. Strong, whispering, ancient...almost eternal. It’s what called me to
this work. Trees are good.
Planting them, caring for them, protecting them, appreciating them…trees
Some of our most profound experiences of connection come through Nature.
For many of us, trees hold a special place in our lives and in our hearts, providing
shade as well as profound context for contemplation of our place in the world. Trees
are good for the soul.
They are also good for the body. They promote rain that brings life,
provide the lattice that habitats are built upon the world over, and for those of
us who enjoy breathing, they provide oxygen for our continued existence. Trees
are the necessary—perhaps the most necessary—ingredient
for a stable, global terrestrial ecosystem and they make this a wonderful planet to
Now it’s clear that trees are even more than that: planting and protecting trees and forests is one of the best strategies
available for combating climate change.
After centuries of deforestation in the name of progress - or a million-dollar
view - the opportunity presented by planting trees and nurturing forests is
coming to the fore. It must. We're running out of options as the climate
changes ever more rapidly, threatening life as we know it on Planet Earth.
And we know that our changing climate is leading to ecological instability,
the impacts are increasing more rapidly and at greater scale than predicted and
the political responses aren’t matching pace with needs. Not only are we
failing to meet the basic needs of the Paris Climate Accord – for those
countries that agreed to it, but a recent UN study, the
Global Assessment Report on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services, asserts
that 1 million species are at imminent risk of extinction directly related to
climate change. We are most definitely in trouble.
How do we fix this?
trees are the answer.
recent article from the Yale School of Forestry cites a study asserting
that planting 1.2 trillion trees will bring our planet's climate
back into balance, restore ecosystems, return stability and mitigate this
terrible threat to our future.
Yes, 1.2 trillion is a huge figure, and although this is truly a massive
global aim, I am reminded that all action is local.
I have seen firsthand how this works. At our Community Tree Planting
in the Daintree a few weeks ago, a group of almost 100 people planted over
3,000 trees in just a few short hours. This community-based action was simple
and transformative—and participating in it was inspiring.
In fact, you’ve helped Rainforest Rescue plant over 300,000 trees so
far! That’s impressive. Well done, you!
is simple - plant trees.
Plant a tree - plant a hundred - plant thousands. At Rainforest Rescue
we plant trees – beautiful and diverse, and we collect them from the rainforest
trees that form some of the richest rainforest and the best carbon sinks in the
world. We propagate them in our Daintree nursery and we ready them for return
to Nature. Then we plant them. Lots of them.
And while it's a wonderful thing to plant trees, It’s important to note
that planting rows of single species isn't going to give you the same climate-change-averting
results that protecting and restoring a rainforest will bring. Complex forests capture and trap 40 times
as much carbon as a “tree farm” does.
And a rainforest
does even more and comes with myriad species that—weaving
together all the available space, light, nutrients, water—efficiently creates a
veritable edifice of carbon-capturing and trapping, sunlight-powered machinery.
Nature knows what she’s doing – she’s been learning on the job for best
results for 4.6 billion years.
bet is to enable Nature. And we do.
That’s why we, in addition to planting rainforest trees and restoring
rainforests, we also buy back and protect forever rich rainforest that is at
risk of being developed and forever destroyed. We save it from being removed
from the cycle of life that helps keep our planetary biosphere whole and the
climate stable. You do this through your support.
You also help to create nature reserves and viable wildlife corridors,
ensuring that these forests will be whole forevermore – they will not be harmed.
They will be allowed to develop and to be – perfectly rainforest.
In a sense, we are in the carbon business.
But we don't sell it. We never will.
To us the richness of the rainforest - particularly the Daintree where we
put so much of our focus - is quite literally priceless. And while it's great for
capturing carbon and keeping it out of the atmosphere, it’s also precious as
habitat for the many species that rely on it.
And it’s also glorious natural, wild space, which we all benefit from.
We share this planet with Nature – we’re fortunate. We need to respect
and care for Nature as it has provided for us over these many millennia. We
must keep it safe, and we must restore it where it has been damaged.
So, plant trees! And help us plant trees as well.
Help everyone by helping the Earth restore and conserve its life support
Branden Barber - CEO photo by Martin Stringer Photography © 2019
All photos by Martin Stringer and Silvia Di Domenicantonio