On the 7th day of Christmas my true love said to me… Let’s #reforest, not buy a tree @iywt0

Day 7 of Xmas — Reforestation, Tree Planting and Crowdfarming

Guest blog by If you Want To as part of  our twelve days of Christmas campaign bringing you the very best the cleanweb has to offer.
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Next stop, power of the crowd in growing plants and trees.

Trees are one of the best way to pull CO2 out of the atmosphere and reverse global warming. We explore how digital innovation is changing the way we can fund and get involved in planting trees.

Apadrinaunolivo is a social enterprise based in Oliete, Spain and they connect people back to nature by getting people to sponsor olive trees that have been neglected. By subscribing to an olive tree, you get olive oil delivered and help preserve the local environment and recover olive wastelands, all without being there.

Naranjas del Carmen is another company looking at how to empower people to plant oranges or adopt beehives by providing people a virtual experience to be part of the farming process, and they call this crowdfarming. By planting an orange tree, you effectively buy a fixed kg of oranges for a year and that gets delivered to you and you get updated throughout the planting and harvesting and have the option to visit the farm. By cutting out the middleman, you get to be part of the process of producing your own food. The project’s goal is to cut out food waste.

Treedom helps people and businesses connect with NGOs and farmers to fund tree planting. Anyone can go to the site to buy a tree to offset CO2 and follow the story of the growth of the tree. They have a menu of trees and CO2 capture information for each tree. Each tree is photographed and geolocalised by the farmer who plants it and have an online page. The trees can be purchased for yourself or gifted to someone special.

Teratrees based is a London based company that is creating a tree planting campaign platform to get communities to organise tree planting and enabling the community to fund the projects. They are focused on schools in the UK.

Advertising Tech for Good

Just like how ReCaptcha repurposed human labour for the digitisation of books, the web is a powerful way to create environmental good. We look at how some innovative businesses are diverting advertising revenues for social and environmental good.

Ecosia is a search engine that turns the advertising revenue generated from search to do reforestation. Ecosia donates at least 80% of its surplus income to tree-planting programs all over the world. They have been running for 7 years and have reached a milestone of planting more than 5 million trees in Peru, Madagascar and Burkina Faso.

Lilo is another search engine applying the same concept, but they have more options for users to choose the environmental and social projects that people can support. 50% of the search revenue is forwarded to projects. A user will have to install Lilo on top of the browser and searches are accumulated in points in the form of ‘drops of water’. The ‘drops of water’ is converted to money which is donated to projects.

Gladly.io have developed two powerful apps. Goodblock is an adblocker that helps raise money for charities including Water Aid and Conservation International. By using the app, you will be required to watch one high quality video advertisement a day, which earns you ‘hearts’ that can be donated to charities. Tab For A Cause is an extension that donates to charity everytime you open a new tab on your browser.

So, what do you think of these new approaches to reforestation and planting trees?

If you have missed the previous post in this series, head back to read here:

Day 1 of XMas — Food Waste Apps

Day 2 of XMas — Air Quality Apps

Day 3 of XMas — Transport Services

Day 4 of XMas — Electric Vehicles

Day 5 of XMas — Crowd Delivery

Day 6 of XMas — Local Food Systems

For more about IYWTo head over to here.


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