CAP celebrates Earth Day 2016
Our planet is currently losing over 15 billion trees each year, equivalent to 48 football fields every minute. This is outrageous. In Malaysia, we have been losing our precious trees to make way for development, logging, large-scale plantations, urbanization, road projects, etc. Our task now is to stop indiscriminate felling of trees and start planting more trees.
In 1970, the year of the first Earth Day, the movement gave voice to an emerging consciousness, channeling human energy toward environmental issues. In honour of Earth Day’s 50th anniversary in 2020, the Earth Day Network has announced Trees for the Earth, a plan to plant 7.8 billion trees by Earth Day 2020: one tree for every person on the planet.
By joining hands in planting 7.8 billion trees all over the world, the Earth Day Network plans to achieve these three major goals:
Mitigating Climate Change and Pollution: Planting trees absorb excess and harmful carbon dioxide from our atmosphere. In a single year, it takes roughly 96 trees to absorb the amount of carbon dioxide produced by one person. Trees also absorb odours and pollutant gases like nitrogen oxides, ammonia, sulphur dioxide and ozone, as well as filter particulates out of the air by trapping them on their leaves and bark.
Protecting Biodiversity: By planting the right trees, we can help counteract the loss of species, as well as provide increased habitat connectivity between regional forest patches.
Supporting Communities and their Livelihoods: Planting trees help communities achieve long-term economic and environmental sustainability, provide food, energy and income. Studies have shown that schools with tree cover have reduced asthma and lung disease rates and help students with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) concentrate for longer periods.
Tree planting has other environmental, economic, social and psychological benefits too. Among them, shade trees reduce the amount of heat absorbed by homes and buildings, thereby reducing energy demand for air conditioning. This is very essential in view of the heatwave that we are experiencing now.
Hence on this Earth Day the Consumers’ Association of Penang (CAP) is partaking on a tree planting campaign. This Earth Day and beyond, let’s plant more trees and save others from being massacred.
Press Release, 22 April 2016