New Zealand Aims To Plant One Billion Trees To Fight Climate Change

New Zealand Aims To Plant One Billion Trees To Fight Climate Change

New Zealand is getting closer to finalizing its plan to plant one billion trees, according to Stuff.

The country's government allocated an additional $240 million to its project, bringing its total budget to $485 million for the next three years.

If approved, this program would play a key role in New Zealand's efforts to mitigate climate change. The country is considering enacting a zero emissions target by 2050. Planting trees can be incorporated into a cap-and-trade, or emissions trading scheme (ETS), program.

Forestry Minister Shane Jones told Stuff:

"Getting the ETS correct could drive the planting of 340 million trees over the next decade – twice the amount that would be planted if the ETS was left in its current state.”

Trees fight climate change by removing greenhouse gas emissions from the atmosphere. They help to protect landscapes from some of the more extreme consequences of climate change such as flooding and storms as well. That is on top of the plenty other benefits of trees, such as cleaning the air, water, and soil; providing food and shelter; and many more.

New Zealand has put the tree planting initiative in social uplift terms.

Jones, the forestry minister, said the trees will help to rehabilitate degraded environments, help wildlife thrive, and provide approximately one-thousand job opportunities.

Critics of the project criticize the government for being disingenuous regarding where the funds are coming from and have stalled its implementation.

However, the initiative enjoys broad support, and the government is considering public-private partnerships which would provide funding to landowners to start planting trees on their properties.

This kind of all-hands-on-deck approach to environmental rehabilitation is happening in other parts of the world, too.

Newly elected Prime Minister Imran Khan in Pakistan announced a plan to plant ten billion trees and India has backed similarly ambitious projects.

Those efforts are undoubtedly good for the environment, but they do not directly tackle climate change, the world’s major environmental challenge.

To do this, countries have to cut greenhouses emissions drastically. Currently, New Zealand has a run-of-the-mill emissions reductions target under the Paris climate agreement. The country is trying to reduce 2005 emissions levels by 30 percent by the year 2030.

The 2050 plan of achieving net zero emissions is even more ambitious and could be a big compliment to a billion new trees.

Reference: Global Citizen

New Zealand Aims To Plant One Billion Trees To Fight Climate Change New Zealand Aims To Plant One Billion Trees To Fight Climate Change Reviewed by Katerina Papakyriakopoulou on 1:36 PM Rating: 5

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