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How a trillion trees could save the planet

How a trillion trees could save the planet

Planting a massive number of trees - around one trillion - is the most effective climate change solution and to combat global warming, scientists say in a new study.

How a trillion trees could save the planet

Research published this week in the journal Science shows that a trillion trees could be planted to capture huge amount of carbon dioxide, and reduce the amount of pollution we release into the atmosphere.

Climate change solution – plant trees

The Swiss scientist say that it’s the most effective way to fight global warming, and there’s enough room. Even with existing cities and farmland, there’s enough space for new trees to cover 9 million square kilometres, their report said. That area is roughly the size of the United States.

As trees grow, they absorb and store the carbon dioxide emissions that are driving global heating. The new research estimates that a worldwide planting programme could remove two-thirds of all the emissions that have been pumped into the atmosphere by human activities, a figure the scientists describe as “mind-blowing”. That’s about as much carbon pollution as humans have spewed in the past 25 years.

The report noted that the countries with the most room for the trees are Russia, Canada, the United States, Australia, Brazil, and China.

“This is by far — by thousands of times — the cheapest climate change solution” and the most effective, said study co-author Thomas Crowther, a climate change ecologist at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich.

“Every other climate change solution requires that we all change our behaviour, or we need some top-down decision from a politician who may or may not believe in climate change, or it’s a scientific discovery we don’t yet have,” he went on to say. “This one is not only our most powerful solution – it’s one that every single one of us can get involved with.”

Crowther emphasised that it remains vital to reverse the current trends of rising greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuel burning and forest destruction, and bring them down to zero. He said this is needed to stop the climate crisis becoming even worse

Read more: Do your bit by planting these trees at home

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