Within the world of carbon removal, there are engineered solutions and there are a range of natural approaches that leverage the power of trees to capture carbon from the air.

Carbon capture technologies appear promising for future efforts, but they do not yet have scalable cost-effective solutions.

Nature-based carbon removal solutions, on the other hand, are currently cost-effective and deliver results.

Reforestation, a carbon removal-focused nature-based solution, offers a host of benefits alongside carbon reduction. Reforestation can bolster ecosystems for local wildlife, positively benefit local water tables, and provide jobs and income to local communities.

The IPCC has made it clear that there is no credible pathway to limiting the worst effects of climate change without nature-based carbon sequestration. And the National Academy of Sciences has argued that nature-based climate change solutions, including reforestation, should contribute to at least 20% of the solutions needed between now and 2050. The same study found that the top 20 nature-based solutions could offer one-third of the cost-effective solutions to climate change. The UN estimates that ecosystem restoration could remove 13 to 26 gigatons of greenhouse gases. For reference, the U.S. currently emits about 6.6 gigatons per year. American forests currently store 15% of the country’s emissions.

Current and past reforestation efforts, including some individual countries' Paris climate pledges, have amounted to over 100 million hectares of land promised for reforestation. In 2020, the World Economic Forum announced the Trillion Trees Campaign for global reforestation.

As the COP26 meeting has shown us, there is increasing global consensus that climate change is a crisis we cannot talk our way out of. The question now remains how we can do everything possible to meet the moment. Supporting reforestation efforts is a crucial part of that formula, along with a variety of other nature-based solutions and commitments to decarbonize economies.

Interested in supporting reforestation efforts, but don't know where to start?

Consider applying for Aspiration's climate-friendly checking and saving accounts. Your deposits never fund fossil fuels, and you have the option to round up your change to fund the planting of trees.

As of June 2024, the Aspiration community has funded the planting of over 29 million trees. Join our community; apply today!

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