The Woodland Trust is launching the UK’s largest mass tree planting campaign – urging the public to pick up their spades and take action on climate change. The Big Climate Fightback aims to get more than a million people to pledge to plant a tree on the run up to a mass day of planting across the UK on November 30.
Sadly, the campaign is necessary because the UK government is failing to meet its annual tree planting commitments by a long way. But Darren Moorcroft, Chief Executive at the Woodland Trust, is defiant and encourages people to get planting: “The Big Climate Fightback is about inspiring people of all ages and backgrounds and providing the chance to take direct action – simply go to our website and pledge to plant a tree, whether it’s in your backyard, neighbourhood, school or at a nearby planting event. It’s an easy way for people to do their individual bit for climate change as part of a mass movement.”
Why plant trees?
Trees are nature’s way of protecting the living planet. They do so in a number of ways: by absorbing CO2 and producing oxygen; by filtering pollutants from the air; by providing natural habitats for wildlife; by providing shelter and shade from the elements; and by preventing flooding. TV celebrity Sandy Toksvig says: “Climate change is a real threat and it affects us all. But there is the simplest of all solutions. It’s green and lovely – the humble tree. It eats CO2 for breakfast and makes all our lives better.”
Here’s a great webpage from the Woodland Trust’s site about why trees are so important in the climate fightback: https://www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/blog/2017/12/why-do-we-need-trees/ To use in class, get students predicting all the benefits of trees before letting them read. Follow up with a project to plan tree planting in your local area – all you need is a map!