Posts Tagged ‘plant a tree’

Save Earth – Plant a Tree

December 24, 2008

In the developed world the average[1] persons carbon dioxide emissions are almost 10 metric tonnes per year.

PATT Foundation

PATT Foundation

This is called their carbon footprint and comes mainly from their household energy usage and transport requirements car travel, flights and commuter transport. Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas which, when released into the atmosphere, acts like a thickening blanket, trapping the sun’s heat. Too much carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is causing the planet to warm up. To help prevent global warming, we all need to reduce our emissions and look at ways we can mitigate the emissions left over that we are responsible for. Trees are a natural green machine which absorb carbon from the atmosphere and release it as oxygen. To this end, trees are an effective way of absorbing the carbon you release into the atmosphere.

Reduce your emissions

  • Reducing your emissions is a vital part of combating climate change. We encourage everyone to be aware of their energy usage and its effects, and take steps to reduce this. What remains can be offset through our Carbon Free programme.
  • By being more energy efficient at home, you can reduce your emissions and lower your energy bills by more than 30%.
  • Adjust your air conditioner and heater thermostat when you go out and shut down your system when you are away for extended periods.
  • Turn off and unplug stereos, radios, TVs, and DVDs when you leave for holidays. These appliances have a stand-by function that uses energy even when they are turned off.
  • Close doors to unused rooms trapping heating or cooling in rooms in use.
  • Consider switching to compact fluorescent lighting. Compact fluorescent light bulbs use about 75 per cent less energy than incandescent bulbs.
  • Insulating your walls and ceilings can save 20 to 30 percent of home heating bills and reduce CO2 emissions by as much as 1 tonne per year.
  • Clean all of your heating and cooling appliances, making sure they are dust free. Energy is lost when heating units have to work harder to draw air through dirty filters. Ensuring that your air conditioner filter is clean can save 5 percent of the energy used.
  • Wash your dishes manually, or ensure your dishwasher is full when you run it. Allow your dishes to air dry, by not using the heat in the drying cycle can save 20 percent of your dishwasher’s total electricity use.
  • Where possible walk or bike to your destination. Fuel use through transport constitutes a large proportion of total UK emissions.
    Recycle glass, metals, plastics and paper.
  • Plant shade trees and paint your house a light color if you live in a warm climate or a dark color if you live in a cold climate.
    Turn your refrigerator down.
  • Select the most energy-efficient models when you replace your old appliances. Look for the Energy Star Label – your assurance that the product saves energy and prevents pollution.
  • Slow down and drive sensibly. The faster and more aggressive you drive, the more petrol your car uses.

The role of trees in offsetting your emissions

Trees are green machines that act as natural filters of our air. Through the process of photosynthesis they absorb carbon dioxide (a key GHG and principle contributor to global warming) from the atmosphere and store it in their trunk, branches, leaves, roots, soil and foliage, while releasing oxygen back out.

Whereas deforestation, degradation and poor forest management reduce carbon storage in forests, sustainable management, planting, and rehabilitation of forests can increase carbon sequestration.  In fact the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation states “global carbon retention resulting from reduced deforestation, increased forest regrowth and more agro-forestry and plantations could make up for about 15% of carbon emissions from fossil fuels over the next 50 years (2006).”

Not only are trees an effective means for absorbing and storing the carbon you emit, they have far reaching benefits that extend well beyond that of filtering the air. Sustainably managed forests and urban forestry projects have multiple environmental and socio-economic functions important at the global, national and local scales, and play a vital part in sustainable development. Forests are sources of wood products. They help regulate local and regional rainfall. And forests are crucial sources of food, medicine, clean drinking water, and immense recreational, aesthetic, and spiritual benefits for millions of people.

– by PATT Foundation

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