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Date: 

Oct 25 2019

Location: 

Online

When And Where Will #TeamTrees Plant 21.5 Million Crowdfunded Trees?

Two months after reaching one of the most ambitious crowdfunding goals in YouTube history, #TeamTrees is getting closer to delivering on behalf of its 800,000+ unique donors.

According to a joint press release from #TeamTrees and the Arbor Day Foundation, the planting of more than 21.5 million trees around the world is already underway, with these notable projects planned for the spring, summer and fall of 2020:

California (Spring 2020): The 2018 wildfire season was unprecedented, with an estimated 8,000 fires burning through more than 1.8 million acres of forestland between July and December. The Arbor Day Foundation is replanting in this area to prevent increased challenges such as mudslides and degraded soil, water, and air quality. #TeamTrees trees will play a key role in this four-year reforestation effort, which aims to help families recover from wildfires including the Carr and Camp Fires.
Kenya (Spring/Summer 2020): Kenya’s Kijabe Forest has historically been a home and corridor for wildlife and an important source of water for the country. Over the past 15 years, however, the forest has been cleared for charcoal and timber, creating dramatic and damaging impacts for wildlife, infrastructure, and quality of life. #TeamTrees trees will help reestablish a sustainable water supply through protecting and replanting around springs and rivers, restoring habitat for wildlife, stabilizing steep slopes prone to landslides, and securing livelihoods.
India (Summer/Fall 2020): Southern India’s Cauvery River Basin is in crisis. The river has shrunk by an estimated 40% from its historical flows over 70 years. This sharp depletion is resulting in drinking water scarcity and difficulty farming. A loss of tree cover has also contributed to poor soil health. Reforesting this river basin and educating farmers about agroforestry practices will help to stabilize the river and improve soil conditions over time.

The viral crowdfunding campaign, launched by popular YouTubers Jimmy “Mr. Beast” Donaldson and Mark Rober, reached its goal of $20 million — and, consequently, 20 million trees — in December 2019. The fundraising total, and subsequent global awareness, were boosted significantly by prolific donations from celebrities like Elon ‘Treelon’ Musk, Marc Benioff, Tobi Lüske and YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki, but the project crossed $20 million in just 56 days through hundreds of thousands of small donations, representing more than 200 countries.

A spokesperson for the Arbor Day Foundation pointed to the continued worldwide focus on reforestation, including the recent launch of the 1t.org project that even garnered support from climate change skeptics like U.S. President Donald J. Trump. The global initiative from the World Economic Forum seeks to grow, restore and conserve 1 trillion trees around the world by 2030, in a bid to restore biodiversity and help fight climate change.

The social media-powered #TeamTrees initiative will be among the first projects to contribute to that bold figure, with plantings planned until the end of 2022. International #TeamTrees planting sites will include Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Haiti, Indonesia, Ireland, Madagascar, Mozambique, Nepal, and the United Kingdom. In the United States, planting locations include Bitterroot National Forest (Montana), Bladen Lakes State Forest (North Carolina), Cache River Watershed (Arkansas), Chippewa National Forest (Minnesota), Custer Gallatin National Forest (Montana), Georgia watersheds, Michigan State Forest lands, Nebraska National Forest, Rappahannock River Watershed (Virginia), Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest (Oregon), Superior National Forest (Minnesota), Tyndall Air Force Base (Florida), Washington State lands, and the Willamette River Basin (Oregon).

Prior to the #TeamTrees movement, the Arbor Day Foundation had formed an initiative called Time For Trees, aiming to plant 100 million trees by Arbor Day 2022. The organization noted a growing number of corporate sponsors, from Accenture to Zerorez, who have signed on to support the cause.

The head of the Arbor Day Foundation offered his gratitude for the generous financial and creative contributions of the social media community.

“MrBeast, Mark, and hundreds of other YouTube creators shared our vision of building a better world through tree planting. They used their platforms to inspire more than half a million individuals to take action for our environment,” said Dan Lambe, president of the Arbor Day Foundation. “Now, the Arbor Day Foundation will do what we do best: ensure that 21.5 million trees are planted in the right places and at the right time.”

Arbor Day is celebrated annually in the U.S. on the last Friday in April; this year, the holiday is April 24.

Posted by leonardjsantos on

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