What if every consumer transaction made trees grow?
The Amazon rainforest is often in the news and most of us are aware why we should preserve it. But let’s not overlook the value of preserving and restoring North American forests. The largest domestic reforestation project to date has rooted more than 42 million trees in the Mississippi Alluvial Plain, a vast region carved by the might river and touching seven U.S. States. Landowners, along with the GreenTrees project, have already reforested 120,000 acres.
These trees can produce a year’s oxygen for 85 million people!
Hundreds of landowners didn’t offer up their private property just for philanthropy… Restoring forests is an investment with return. Their trees are American-made carbon offsets, providing jobs and value as well as oxygen. The mix of tree species provides some for harvest while others mature, and landowners receive dividend checks.
What’s better is that you don’t have to own land in the Mississippi Valley to participate in the project. Using apps, the micro-transactions of daily business and consumer spending can scale up to restore ecosystems.
The first app of this sort, offered by Forest Green, is based on taxi rides. Cab Hound represents 4,400 vehicles of taxi companies in 8 U.S. cities, including Charlotte, North Carolina; Brooklyn, New York and New Orleans. Seeking to innovate the taxi industry, Cab Hound is a leader in deploying this carbon transaction platform. Drivers and passengers both have access to the app, which calculates distance and pounds of carbon dioxide per EPA guidelines.
Managing partner of Forest Green, Chandler Van Voorhis, says the idea is that “Every time a wheel turns, an acorn is going into the ground.” For instance, rides in Brooklyn can plant trees in the Catskill Mountains. Cab Hound is available for riders in New York, Charlotte, Atlanta, Asheville and Western Kentucky.
You can download the app from Cab Hound’s Facebook Fan Page.
As consumer interest in the carbon economy grows, Green Trees has plans to bring other industries into this model where thousands of micro-transactions grow forests. Imagine if every concert ticket you purchase would help plant trees? More reason to dance!
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