Earth Day’s Global 2016 Theme: Trees For The Earth.

Over the next five years, as Earth Day moves closer to its 50th anniversary, we’re calling on you to help us achieve one of our most ambitious goals yet — we’re planting 7.8 billion trees and we’re starting now.

Our planet is currently losing over 15 Billion trees each year (equivalent to 48 football fields every minute). In honor of Earth Day’s 50th anniversary in 2020, Earth Day Network announced Trees for the Earth, a plan to plant 7.8 Billion trees by Earth Day 2020: one tree for every person on the planet. We invite you to join us!

Trees will be the first of five major goals we are undertaking in honor of the five-year countdown to our 50th anniversary. On their own and together, these initiatives will make a significant and measurable impact on the Earth and will serve as the foundation of a cleaner, healthier and more sustainable planet for all.

In planting 7.8 Billion trees, we will contribute to three major goals:

Mitigating Climate Change and Pollution

Planting trees absorb excess and harmful CO2 from our atmosphere. In a single year, it takes roughly 96 trees to absorb the amount of CO2 produced by one person. Trees also absorb odors and pollutant gases like nitrogen oxides, ammonia, sulfur dioxide and ozone, as well as filter particulates out of the air by trapping them on their leaves and bark.

Protecting Biodiversity

By planting the right trees, we can help counteract the loss of species, as well as provide increased habitat connectivity between regional forest patches.

Supporting Communities and their Livelihoods

Planting trees help communities achieve long-term economic and environmental sustainability and provide food, energy and income. Studies have shown that schools with tree cover have reduced asthma and lung disease rates and help students with ADHD concentrate for longer periods. Tree planting has a direct correlation to reduced crime rates, increased property values, reduced litter, higher social cohesion, and a number of other social and psychological benefits.

Plant a tree. Make a donation. Activate and motivate your friends and social networks.

How to Get Involved

Changing the world starts by changing your own little corner of it.

Ways to participate include:

  • Join Earth Day Network in our effort to plant more trees. Organize a team to plant trees in your neighborhood or donate to The Canopy Project.
  • Urge your local elected officials to make a substantial tree planting commitment by starting a letter-writing campaign or online petition.
  • Urge businesses to make a substantial tree planting commitment by starting a letter-writing campaign or online petition.
  • Lead a recycling drive to collect as much plastic, metal, and glass as possible.
  • Pick up trash at a local park or beach.
  • Invite an expert, such as a professor or a forester, to educate your community about climate change, the importance of trees, and about how to reduce your carbon footprint.
  • Set up a screening of an environmentally-themed movie. Consider supplementing the screening with a speaker who can lead a Q&A following the film.
  • Create an eco-fair with local green businesses and environmental organizations. Not only will this inform the public of ways they can get involved, but it’s also a fun way to promote local businesses and bring your community together.

Find out more about Earth Day