Billion Tree Campaign gets pledges totaling 562M trees since January
March 6, 2007
The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) announced that its “Billion Tree Campaign” has so-far achieved commitments to plant 562,769,095 trees, following a pledge of 250 million trees by the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources of Mexico.
The campaign seeks to plant a billion trees during 2007. So far UNEP says that only 1 million trees have been planted since the program began in January.
The campaign was launched under the guidance of Wangari Maathai, founder of the Green Belt Movement and 2004 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and Prince Albert II of Monaco.
UNEP says that reforesting millions of hectares of degraded land can help fight global warming, restore soil productivity, and slow desertification. It notes that 130 million hectares of some 140 billion trees (“14 billion trees every year for 10 consecutive years”) would need to be planted just to make up for forest loss over the past ten years.
Teak seedlings in Sulawesi, Indonesia
“The campaign, which aims to plant a minimum of 1 billion trees in 2007, offers a direct and straight-forward path down which all sectors of society can step to contribute to meeting the climate change challenge.” said UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner, when the campaign was launched. “The Billion Tree Campaign is but an acorn, but it can also be practically and symbolically a significant expression of our common determination to make a difference in developing and developed countries alike. We have but a short time to avert serious climate change. We need action.”