WHY WE'RE CHOOSING TREES

Of all the causes in the world that need money, why are we choosing to plant trees? Let’s take a look.

We wanted to make sure this company did some good in the world and didn’t just focus on profits and growth at the expense of everything around it. But what was the best way to do that?

Well, when we took a deep dive in that direction, we discovered a hidden gem that has far reaching benefits for myriads of living creatures, ecosystems and economies — all of which is supported by science.

Planting trees.

The (not so) hidden benefits of trees

As the climate catastrophe worsens with every year, scientists and economists around the world are doubling down on efforts to right the ship.

And a consistent theme of this new research is that trees (and the ecosystems they support) are vital for the planet’s long term stability, and are actually doing a lot more good than we initially understood.

Discovering some of these profound impacts helped us to settle on the goal of tree planting and reforestation as our core hope for this website:

1. Trees protect dying rivers and help prevent droughts

As the climate changes around the world, rivers that once flowed freely are drying up due to overuse, land clearing and scattered rainfall patterns.

Nowadays it’s common to have drought year after drought year interspersed with un-seasonal storms which degrade riverbanks and top soils, and wash nutrient (and fertilizer) rich soil into the ocean where it corrupts corals and sea life. This terrible worsening feedback loop affects food production, water tables, and the fertility of the land.

These catastrophic patterns can be corrected through reforestation and grass planting, the maintenance of coastal forests and wetlands, and the correct allocation of water to farms. Even in a few short years, projects to restore damaged creek beds and rivers have yielded extraordinary results for farmers and native species alike.

2. Trees can prevent disease and make you healthier

Controlling for things like income and age, research has found that living near trees makes you physically healthier. In fact, it is estimated that trees save the healthcare system approximately $7 billion a year globally by filtering air pollution and thereby preventing some cancers and respiratory diseases. This has profound impacts for city planning, and the choices we make about deforestation and urban growth.

planting trees

3. Trees can prevent depression and make you smarter

Ever spent the day out in the wildness or a national park and just felt better for it? Research has shown that even just looking at a picture of a tree can make you happier, and the benefits on your mood are surprising and long lasting. Some studies even showed that being out in a forest can stave off depression well into adulthood for kids who grow up in more tree-dense areas, and in some cases are as effective as medication.

It’s also been shown that people who go for walks in a forest before an exam retain up to 20% more information than those that walk around the city or don’t go for a walk at all. Again and again research finds that human brains and bodies benefit from being around trees and healthy natural environments.

4. Trees protect and enhance ecosystems that are at risk

Scientists are panicking to tell the world that the collapse of nature itself due to plummeting insect loss is right around the corner. An estimated 2.5% of insects are going extinct per year, which means that within 100 years there is almost nothing left. This is largely due to the overuse of pesticides and habitat loss caused by deforestation for beef in countries where grazing is unsuitable. But studies have shown that even a single tree can make a difference:

"The analysis showed adding a single tree to pasture could boost, for example, the species number of bird species from near zero to 80. After this initial sharp increase, adding trees continues to add new species, but more gradually. As the stand of trees approaches 100 percent cover within the area of interest, endangered and at-risk species like wildcats and deep forest birds begin to appear."

This research is starting to show that trees are good for both farmers and native species and provide extraordinary benefits for both, especially at times when rainfall is reduced and insect populations are at risk fro a variety of pressures.

5. Planting trees can reverse the climate catastrophe

It might seem obvious, but it was only recently that science really understood that massive-scale tree planting had the power to absorb enough CO2 to undo a significant portion of the damage being done to the environment. The best part? It is an extremely cheap solution compared to some of the alternatives, and the act of planting trees has all the benefits of supporting fragile ecosystems, enhancing quality of life for local populations, and all the other benefits mentioned above.

Using profits to plant a boat-load of trees

With all this in mind, the decision to use a growing portion of profits to plant trees was an easy one. We are passionate about the environment, and using photography to build a successful business that constantly pumps money into reforestation is something we hope will greatly benefit the insects, animals, and people of our local area.

It’s going to be a difficult project with lots of learning curves and challenges, but we are very motivated to work with and learn from smart people who know the land and understand the science.

If you have any questions or would like to help this effort in any way whatsoever, we’d love to hear from you!