Every day you hear so many conflicting stories when it comes to tree planting, reforestation and carbon reduction. Yes it’s complex, there are lots of nuances, but in simple terms - Trees reduce our carbon footprint.
We all remember one of the first lessons taught in science; Trees take in carbon dioxide, use the sun’s energy convert carbon dioxide into sugars, use the sugars for food and release oxygen in the process.
They’ve done this for about 350 million years, and if we start acting more responsibly then there’s no reason why Mother Nature won’t continue doing it for another 350 million.
According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the only way we can keep global warming below 2°C is by reducing CO2 emissions from human activities, which means reducing your carbon footprint, it’s that simple.
A carbon footprint is the total amount of greenhouse gasses released into the atmosphere as a result of the activities of a business, a community or an individual. The UK contributes to 1.1% of global emissions making the UK amongst the top emitting countries despite our smaller population.
Planting trees is one of the simplest ways you can help ease the impact that human activity has on our planet. Not only do they convert Co2 to Oxygen, they are the ultimate carbon capture and storage machines. As the trees grow and absorb atmospheric carbon dioxide, they lock the carbon in the wood of their trunks in the form of carbohydrates until the tree dies, decays or is burnt.
It is difficult to generalize how much CO2 trees can absorb and store in one year as it depends on a whole host of factors such as the type of tree or the age of the tree. But at SKOOT we make it simple, we simply take the first year of the tree (5.9kg for a mangrove sapling) and only take that first years carbon removal. Which means we say a tonne of carbon is removed by planting 170 trees.
Every year thereafter we say it is a gift back to Mother Nature, which means the 170 trees are likely to remove one tonne in the first year but by the end of their lives, could have removed 85 tonnes.
We plant what can be considered as one of the world's supertrees; Mangroves. Mangroves can store up to 10 times more carbon per hectare than other terrestrial forests and they are 5 times better at removing carbon than North Hemisphere trees.
The concerns over tree planting and greenwashing, really centre around whether the trees are planted, are they protected, is the land protected and are they protected from forest fires. It’s for all these reasons that we work with Eden Reforestation in Kenya to plant our trees helping to alleviate the extreme poverty within the local communities. We have a designated site at Tudor Creek in Mombasa in Kenya. Where our land is protected by government agreements in perpetuity. A site where we help employ a community to not only reforest the site, but to maintain it, protect it and ensure that both the community flourishes alongside the mangrove forest.
We also believe that it should be simple to reduce your carbon footprint. By planting Mangroves or any other type of tree you are helping to mitigate climate change by reducing the amount of carbon in the atmosphere. Although trees are only part of the solution and there are many other changes that need to be made to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions, planting trees can be an easy first step for individuals who want to begin to make a difference.
Visit SKOOT.eco today.