June 5th: World Environment Day

Photo: istockphotos
Twenty Six Countries Around the World will Unite to Plant Trees Simultaneously

If every person on this planet were to plant just ONE tree, we would fix nearly 260 million tons of CO2 annually? That’s enough to offset the annual carbon emissions of Colombia, Chile, Peru, Ecuador, the Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Bolivia, Costa Rica, Honduras, Panama and Nicaragua combined.

In commemoration of EARTH’s twentieth Anniversary, EARTH University, in San Jose, Costa Rica, and its graduates, with the support of the Costa Rica Tourist Board (ICT), CNN and Cummins are organizing a simultaneous global tree planting on June 5, World Environment Day, called EARTH Plants the Future. Tree plantings have been organized by EARTH alumni in over 26 countries, and planting commitments exceed 650,000 trees as of today.

EARTH, located in Guácimo, Limón, Costa Rica is a private, international, non-profit university dedicated to education in the agricultural sciences and natural resources in order to contribute to sustainable development in the tropics by seeking a balance between agricultural production and environmental preservation.  Over the last 20 years, EARTH has been implementing a unique educational model that allows the University to offer opportunities to the most qualified young people, and through these young leaders, EARTH contributes to the sustainable development of Latin America and other tropical regions.

EARTH Plants the Future is both a symbolic and practical action to address climate change, as it represents both the hope for the future and a concrete act to mitigate current emissions of greenhouse gases.  On the EARTH campus alone, there will be over 1500 participants planting 16,500 trees.  All over Latin America, countries where our graduates are working have organized tree plantings, such as Mexico, Colombia, Guatemala, Ecuador, Bolivia and El Salvador.

“Initiatives such as these have propelled Costa Rica’s goal to obtain environmental sustainability,” said Carlos Ricardo Benavides, Minister of Tourism of Costa Rica.  “We are excited to be supporting this important global initiative and we urge the international community to become advocates and unite in this endeavor on World Environment Day,” added Benavides.

EARTH’s office in the United States has also launched a campaign with donors, challenging them to use fundraising software to find friends and family to sponsor trees for the planting.  The goal is for each participant to raise $200, sponsoring 40 trees.
Those interested in getting involved with EARTH Plants the Future can participate remotely by purchasing trees on the website.  Trees that will be planted at EARTH can be purchased for $5, or virtual trees can be planted for free.  For every 20 trees planted virtually, a sponsor will donate one real tree.