Why Partner with a Tree Planting Business
The corporate and charitable sectors have long practiced tree planting, as it has become a safe and unobtrusive strategy for the philanthropic arm of many large businesses. What started as PR fodder has now become an essential component of many companies’ sustainability plans.
At the scale at which many companies operate, it can be tempting for them to organize tree-planting drives on their own. Tree planting seems like one of those low-effort, high-return initiatives, and this leads some groups to strike out on their own, planting trees where they see empty land. However, this isn’t the best approach for many reasons, including the ones we’ve listed below.
You can’t plant any kind of tree anywhere
While the process of tree planting seems easy on the surface, it is a highly scientific process that takes into account many environmental factors, such as soil conditions, native species, another biodiversity, and rainfall. Not every tree will survive everywhere in the world — in the wrong place; non-natives might die, develop a disease, or become invasive and destroy other vegetation in the area. Some tree varieties also need extensive pruning and care, which, if you can’t provide them, may just burden the community and negate all the effort you put into planting the tree.
Tree planting can be an opaque process if done wrong
Despite the growing number of organizations that offer this element of climate action to anyone and everyone under the sun, we often find that transparency is left in the dust. The process doesn’t end once the tree is planted — you will want to know whether it’s making a difference, like restoring biodiversity or sequestering a good amount of carbon. Anything less than that is greenwashing. Unfortunately, good-hearted consumers are often misled by strategies and end up supporting tree-planting drives that aren’t as clean as they make themselves out to be. Therefore we always recommend partnering with a tree-planting business that is open and transparent about how they conduct tree planting.
One-off tree-planting projects may not have as significant an impact as we’d like
According to American Forests, if we carried out sporadic projects everywhere, as is still the custom for most tree planting organizations, we wouldn’t really make a significant impact. To make a measurable difference, we would have to focus on specific areas of the world or issues for years on end. That level of dedication may be impossible for a company, but it is very much the core value of a tree-planting organization.
Why you should partner with a tree planting business
If your goal is to do tree planting right, then you’ll want to find a partner that aligns with your business values and culture. Here is why we recommend partnering with a tree-planting business like EcoMatcher.
You can decide on your level of involvement
There are collaborations where the company just contributes financial resources, and expert farmers plant the trees. Other businesses could choose to include their own staff members in planting or engage with children to educate them. Partnering with a tree-planting organization allows you to choose your level of involvement while also having expert help on hand.
You can identify impact at scale
A good tree-planting organization typically has scientists and experts who can clearly show the impact of your business’ support at scale. This is usually backed by years of data that they’ve collected from their many efforts around the world. Ideally, they would have set up trackers to measure key metrics, such as how much carbon has been sequestered or how much flooding or erosion has reduced. EcoMatcher allows you to see much of this data for yourself on your smartphone, which is a higher level of transparency and involvement. The EcoMatcher system, for example, can help you virtually travel to every tree, learn more about each tree and farmer, view your ESG report, and even calculate your annual carbon footprint.
You can make a difference where it actually counts
As we said earlier, there are places where it doesn’t make sense to plant a tree, especially if it’s an invasive or non-native species. Partnering with a tree-planting organization ensures you don’t do more harm than good and make a difference in the parts of the world where it counts. Mongabay, for example, has an extremely helpful resource that helps anyone filter among over 350 tree-planting initiatives in 80 different countries. If you’d rather go through a trusted intermediary, then EcoMatcher can help — we have partnered with carefully selected organizations in parts of the world, including Indonesia, India, and Madagascar, where the effects of climate change are rife.
You can free your mind of the logistics
Imagine finding the appropriate sapling, finding the right land, digging a hole, watering the sapling, spraying fertilizer and pesticide, and doing this every day. Now multiply that by a thousand, and you can see that tree planting can be labor-intensive and much more difficult for those without experience in doing this at scale. Partnering with a tree-planting business ensures that you can free your mind of the logistics of tree planting while still making a difference and staying involved.
You can have a global impact
Carrying out tree planting on our own means that we would be severely limited by where we are, how far we can travel, and what we can locally source. However, when you partner with a tree-planting organization, you can make an impact on any part of the world that truly needs your help without having to travel or physically plant the trees yourself. EcoMatcher, for example, leverages the power of technology to enable a global impact while helping organizations be close to the tree through pictures, details of the farmers, and other constant updates. You no longer have to limit your impact to the local area but can be known for your generosity in other parts of the world, too.
You can think long-term
There is a massive difference between “planting trees” and “sustaining a forest.” The former can be done in an afternoon; the latter takes years and is much more environmentally complex. Tree-planting organizations help companies focus on the entire process, from sourcing and planting seedlings to seeing the tree grow over many years. We must remember that tree planting is a means to an end: conserving and restoring ecosystems.
The final word
As we said, a tree is a proxy for a much more complex goal, one that is measured in biodiversity, livelihood security, and the protection of the planet. Partnering with a tree-planting organization can help companies think more large-scale and long-term in order to maximize their impact and make the best use of their resources and time.
If you don’t know where to start, why not start with EcoMatcher? We partner with vetted tree-planting NGOs and businesses that plant the right trees at the right time in the right place. We leverage blockchain and technology to make this tree planting accessible and inclusive. At the same time, we support local livelihood, see the forest and not just the trees, and make positive climate change possible at a global level. We’d love for you to join us.