LINCOLN, Nebraska (October 26, 2020) - On the anniversary of the launch of #TeamTrees, the Arbor Day Foundation announced that the campaign’s goal of planting 22 million trees by the end of 2022 is well underway. Amidst the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic, the Foundation will have planted 7.1 million trees spanning more than twenty countries by the close of 2020. Of the 34 projects scheduled for 2020, 24 are fully complete. The remaining 10 are in progress and on track to be finished by the year’s end.
“Despite the uncertainty caused by the coronavirus pandemic and historic wildfires in the western United States, our network of tree planting partners around the globe are carrying out the #TeamTrees mission,” said Dan Lambe, president of the Arbor Day Foundation. “With their commitment to safely executing planting projects, and with the support of more than 800,000 #TeamTrees donors to date, we are helping to ensure that high-need forests around the world recover from fire, natural disasters, and deforestation.”
#TeamTrees plantings will continue through the end of 2022, with projects spanning every continent not named Antarctica. The environmental impact is significant: according to a U.S. Forest Service analysis, planting more than 20 million trees will absorb 1.6 million tons of carbon – the equivalent of taking 1.24 million cars off the road for a year. Trees planted will help improve air and water quality, expand natural habitats for wildlife, and mitigate climate change.
The Arbor Day Foundation was selected to implement #TeamTrees planting thanks to their vast network of tree planting partners and their proven track record of successfully planting trees at this immense scale. In March of 2019, the nonprofit organization publicly announced its Time for Trees initiative, an effort to plant 100 million trees by Arbor Day of 2022.
#TeamTrees came to life when the online community challenged 21-year-old YouTuber Jimmy Donaldson – aka MrBeast – to plant 20 million trees to commemorate hitting 20 million YouTube subscribers. Joining forces with other online influencers, including fellow YouTuber and former NASA scientist Mark Rober, Donaldson drove the YouTube community’s campaign to raise $20 million to plant 20 million trees around the globe. The campaign reached its $20 million goal on December 19, just 56 days after its launch on October 25. To date, the campaign has collected more than 800,000 donations totaling more than $22 million. While #TeamTrees garnered large contributions from tech industry leaders - including Elon Musk, Marc Benioff, Susan Wojcicki and Tobi Lütke – smaller donations from hundreds of thousands of donors pushed the campaign to the finish line. The most common donation amount was just $5.
About the Arbor Day Foundation
Founded in 1972, the Arbor Day Foundation has grown to become the largest nonprofit membership organization dedicated to planting trees, with more than one million members, supporters, and valued partners. During the last 45 years, more than 400 million Arbor Day Foundation trees have been planted in neighborhoods, communities, cities and forests throughout the world. Our vision is to help others understand and use trees as a solution to many of the global issues we face today, including air quality, water quality, climate change, deforestation, poverty and hunger.
As one of the world’s largest operating conservation foundations, the Arbor Day Foundation, through its members, partners and programs, educates and engages stakeholders and communities across the globe to involve themselves in its mission of planting, nurturing and celebrating trees. More information is available at arborday.org.