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We think trees are extraordinary. As well as giving us clean air to breathe, they are also vital for maintaining the diverse ecosystems that affect almost everything on the planet! Trees absorb and store harmful carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and release life-giving oxygen. They are home to thousands of species of insects, fungi, mammals, birds, and plants. Some 250 million people around the globe are living in forest and savannah areas and depend on them for food, shelter, and income. Trees are life!

But we humans are destroying forests at an alarming rate. Did you know that globally the number of trees has fallen by 46% since the beginning of human civilisation? Over 15 billion trees are cut down each year. Deforestation is happening for various reasons: clearing of land for agriculture, urban development, wildfires, logging operations for wood and paper, and degradation due to climate change. It affects wildlife, ecosystems, weather patterns, and, ultimately, the climate. Deforestation impacts the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere in two main ways: when trees are felled, they release the carbon they have been storing into the atmosphere; and growing trees absorb the greenhouse gases. Fewer forests mean tremendous amounts of carbon in the atmosphere. In terms of climate change, cutting trees both adds carbon dioxide to the air and removes the ability to absorb existing carbon dioxide.

The situation is grim, and it's clear.. deforestation must stop. But what else can be done? We can plant trees! Planting new trees to replace those lost, along with other forest resource management strategies, can help to reduce deforestation's environmental impact on our planet. A recent study published in the journal Science said, "the restoration of trees remains among the most effective strategies for climate change mitigation." A global tree restoration programme could help to remove a significant amount of all the carbon emissions that are in the earth's atmosphere today!

We think planting new trees is a no-brainer, and we want to be at least a small part of the solution here at Eco Ness. So for every order we receive we will pay for a tree to be planted as part of a reforestation programme. We will do this through a non-profit organisation called One Tree Planted that is focused on global reforestation. They have planting programmes in North America, Latin America, Asia, Australia, and Africa. They conduct extensive scientific research about the local ecosystems, ensuring their plantings are diverse with multiple tree species, thereby not creating monocultures, and ensure predominantly native species are planted.

You can find out more about One Tree Planted here:
Go and check them out and learn more about all the great things they are doing!

For you, the consumer, and for us as a small business, there is, of course, much more to this picture. Planting trees alone will not be enough. We must begin to examine the products we purchase, consuming less in general, seeking out locally, sustainably produced sources whenever possible. And we should all talk about it! Talk about deforestation, climate change, loss of habitats and wildlife species, and what we can all do to help reverse the damage to us and our planet. Get conversations going with your friends, family, colleagues, the person standing next to you at the bus stop! After all, with awareness comes change.

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