Natural Lands - the magazine of Natural Lands spring-summer 2020 issue - Page 10

8 planting a forest. Planting trees is one of the most effective and cheapest ways of taking CO2 out of the atmosphere to tackle the climate crisis, according to scientists who analyzed how many more trees could be planted without encroaching on crop land or urban areas worldwide. The research was published in the journal Science last year. As trees grow, they absorb and store the carbon dioxide emissions that are driving climate change. New research estimates that a global planting program could remove two-thirds of all the emissions from human activities that remain in the atmosphere today. “This quantitative evaluation shows [forest] restoration isn’t just one of our climate change solutions, it is overwhelmingly the top one,” said lead study author Tom Crowther. “What blows my mind is the scale. I thought restoration would be in the top 10, but it is overwhelmingly more powerful than all of the other climate change solutions proposed.” In 2017, Natural Lands acquired Bryn Coed Preserve in Chester Springs, Chester County. In doing so, the organization saved one of the largest remaining unprotected swaths of land in the greater Philadelphia region from becoming a housing development. However, after decades of being farmed, the hills at Bryn Coed—which means “wooded hill” in Welsh—are far less wooded than they once were. Last winter, Natural Lands planted 12,500 native trees along a 3.5-mile Mark Williams