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Many people think that planting trees can stop climate change, but the truth is this isn’t enough. It is an overly simplistic approach to a carbon dioxide abatement problem that is inherently much more complex. To mitigate climate change, we have to look at the problem holistically. We need to take into consideration not only the topic of deforestation but its causes. Be they political, economic, sociological, technical, or legal. We also need to change the way we consume, partially, by growing as much of our own food as we can.

Politicians can’t guarantee conservation.

Planting a tree doesn’t mean that it’s going to be protected. Governments, despite their best efforts, aren’t very good at maintaining a policy. Parties change, and with them, environmental protections get wiped away with a fell swoop of a pen.

–      How Trumps is Changing Environmental Policy
–      Brazil’s President is destroying the Amazon

However, if forests are on private land, then the issue becomes much more complicated. Now we’re exploring property seizure, which is a much more difficult task to accomplish, across the developed, and the developing world.

By owning the land and mineral rights to the areas we reforest, we can ensure their preservation.

Buying land and planting trees is better economically.

While land prices vary across regions. We’ve identified areas in Central and Latin America where we can reforest an acre of land for a variable cost of ~$2500 to ~$14,500 per acre, including land, for the first year. Then $6,000 for each subsequent year for a maximum of two.

Compare this to the $1/tree that is touted by many organizations, and we see direct cost savings per acre of about 50% when using the Miyawaki method, estimating 43,560 trees/acre.

The afforestation in each target area should also provide economic benefit to its residents, by injecting that capital into local economies. Land ownership also provides us certain rights, possession, control, collateral, etc.

Planting trees by themselves isn’t enough.

What we ought to be thinking about is about making the greatest impact over time, ecological conservation, reforestation, and environmental replenishment. Not to mention the environmental benefits that come along with reforestation, like filtered and stored water, cleaner air, maintaining biodiversity, and ecosystem restoration, to name a few.

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