Projects to plant trees are increasing around the world

Projects to plant trees are increasing around the world

From Ethiopia to Pakistan, from Germany to Australia, reforestation programs are growing. That's why they are really useful for the environment against climate change

Reforestation projects are increasing in the world (Unsplash) Today trees are the greatest technology that nature has made available to us to absorb carbon dioxide. Replanting the planet's forests, which have been cleared in large quantities to make room for buildings, roads and agricultural fields, or cut down for timber or burned by fires, will help mitigate climate change. This is an opinion shared by industry experts and institutions around the world: this is why reforestation projects have been increasing in recent years.

In a likely world record, Ethiopia just planted 220 MILLION trees in a day, to tackle climate change. It plans to plant 4 BILLION trees & so far 2.6 BILLION have been planted. India set the world record in 2016, planting more than 50 million trees. This @PMEthiopia Abiy fellow!

- Charles Onyango-Obbo (@ cobbo3) July 29, 2019

Projects in the world

Dall 'Ethiopia to Pakistan, from Germany to Australia: at any latitude, reforestation projects are carried out by environmental organizations in collaboration with local governments.

After the 2015 Paris Agreement, the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh set a world record: 800,000 volunteers planted 50 million trees in a single day. The record was broken the following year by the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, which employed 1.5 million volunteers to plant 66 million shrubs in just 12 hours. The Ethiopian government has launched the Green Legacy Initiative to create 1,000 planting sites across the country. Volunteers managed to plant more than 350 million trees. The United Nations Environment Program has devised the Trillion Tree campaign which aims to plant one trillion trees involving nations all over the world.

The tech world was no exception: some of the most world famous people have collaborated with Elon Musk and The Arbor Day Foundation for the #TeamTrees project, with the aim of planting 20 million trees by 2022 on all continents and ensuring their survival. These are just some of the many projects around the world. And Italy did not stand by.

Reforestation projects in Italy (6pm Studio)

Reforestation in Italy

There is no shortage of large and small reforestation projects on the Peninsula. They range from neighborhood operations such as that of the Tamburi area in Taranto to mitigate the pollution of the nearby Ilva steel plant, to projects spread throughout the territory. Among these stands out Mosaico Verde, a national campaign promoted by AzzeroCO2 and Legambiente with the aim of redeveloping the Italian territory through forestation projects for new trees and the sustainable management of existing forests involving public bodies and companies.

Elena Piazza, head of AzzeroCO2 forestry projects, explained to us why these projects are important for the environment: “Forests perform important ecosystem services in favor of humanity. First of all, they play a central role in the storage of CO 2 and therefore in climate regulation, and at the same time their presence is essential to prevent hydrogeological instability, protect habitats and biodiversity, reduce heat islands and give well-being to communities. Increasing and safeguarding the forest heritage, through projects such as Mosaico Verde, means helping the forest system to be efficient, allowing it to perform its functions in the best possible way. At a time when the climate crisis is manifesting its consequences more and more violently, we believe that carrying out reforestation or protection projects means focusing on the future that must be sustainable, because it is the only possible one and what we believe in ".

Reforestation projects in Italy (6pm Studio) AzzeroCO2 has been carrying out forestation projects in Italy since 2007. All the interventions started have been completed because they are always supported by a sponsor company according to the key principle of the Mosaico Verde campaign: a synergy between public and private that allows you to intervene where there is more need by finding a meeting point between the offer of green areas to be redeveloped and the desire of companies to invest in their territory part of the value generated by their activities, in social responsibility actions of business.

“In just over three years of activity, 267,000 trees have been planted and 238 hectares g ià redeveloped in 60 areas managed by municipalities and park authorities of 15 Italian regions, for which an absorption of approximately 186,900 tons of CO 2 is estimated in the coming years (in the average life cycle of trees). Citizens are an integral part of the campaign being directly involved by joining the individual initiatives that member companies implement to raise awareness among their stakeholders on the importance of acting to protect the environment, or citizens can also be protagonists through our project ' give a tree '”, adds Piazza.

Deforestation has increased dramatically over the past 50 years, with about 18 million acres of forest being lost every year.

To preserve the vital role of forests in protecting biodiversity & absorbing CO2, we must halt their destruction.

- UN Climate Change (@UNFCCC) April 30, 2021

Criticism to the project

Between stratospheric numbers and a trend that sometimes risks being counted only as another social campaign, the reforestation projects have also attracted some criticism. "The more extensive the intervention is carried out, and therefore the more trees that are planted, the greater its effectiveness in terms of CO 2 storage, contrasting heat islands and protecting biodiversity. However, this is not a competition to plant the largest number of trees, in a country like ours, which already has a substantial forest heritage, estimated at 12 million hectares "explains Piazza.

Furthermore, how reports the BBC, two recent academic papers have stated that financial incentives to plant trees can backfire on governments and reduce biodiversity with minimal impact on carbon emissions. A separate paper found that the amount of carbon new forests can absorb could be overestimated. "The most important thing is to carry out interventions that respect the criteria of biodiversity and territorial specificity thanks to the use of different and indigenous species typical of the geographical area concerned and at the same time ensure the socio-economic sustainability of the intervention. Finally, the most important aspect to consider when planting plants is the guarantee of their permanence over time, through maintenance and monitoring of the new green areas. These are therefore interventions that create environmental wealth and that do not negatively impact the area concerned ", comments Piazza.

Scientists also say this: in the fourth report released in 2007 by Ipcc, an intergovernmental group on climate change, it is specified that among the main mitigation technologies and practices by sector we speak precisely of “forestation; reforestation; forest management; reduction of deforestation; management of products deriving from timber harvesting; use of forestry products for the production of bioenergy in order to replace the use of fossil fuels ". “Everyone must do their part to reduce climate-altering emissions into the atmosphere”, concludes Piazza. Reforesting therefore does not only mean planting trees, but ensuring that those trees remain and generate, over time, a value to be returned to the community and the environment.

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