How it started
Launched at the World Economic Forum’s 50th Annual Meeting in Davos, Switzerland in January of 2020, 1t.org is designed as a 10-year effort to support the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration 2021-2030. 1t.org aims to connect, empower and serve a global movement to conserve, restore and grow one trillion trees by 2030.
The first national chapter of 1t.org launched in the United States in August of 2020, catalyzed by strong early interest from the U.S. federal government, other governments at all levels, U.S. based corporations and non-profits, and U.S. civil society organizations.
1t.org offers innovative technologies which will serve to connect tens of thousands of small and large groups around the world that are engaged in tree planting and forest restoration. Creating this ‘greening global community’ will allow for sharing critically needed funding and best practices – just what is needed to achieve the trillion trees goal in 10 years. - Dr. Jane Goodall
U.S. Stakeholder Council
The 1t.org U.S. Stakeholder Council is made up of 20 diverse public and private sector entities that inform the strategic direction of the U.S. Chapter and assure that its operations and technical support equitably and effectively meet the needs of all 1t.org U.S. Chapter stakeholders.
U.S. Chapter Secretariat
The daily operations of the U.S. Chapter are led by a Secretariat made up of staff from the World Economic Forum and American Forests. The Secretariat helps entities develop pledges, provides technical assistance for needs like climate-informed forestry, tracks progress on each pledge and connects all participants in the U.S. Chapter into a dynamic global community. The U.S. Chapter 1t.org Secretariat can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
American Forests has worked longer than any national nonprofit conservation organization in the United States to protect and restore the country’s forests. Since its founding in 1875, American Forests has been the pathfinder for the forest conservation movement. The organization is now focused on building a movement to reforest America, from cities to large, rural landscapes.
World Economic Forum
The World Economic Forum is the International Organization for Public-Private Cooperation.
The Forum engages the foremost political, business, cultural and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and industry agendas.
No. 1t.org encourages the conservation of existing forest ecosystems, as well as assisted restoration of degraded forests (such as from wildfires, beetles, extractive industry operations, etc.). These actions complement the planting and nurturing of new trees where appropriate.
The foundation for forest conservation is to maintain existing, healthy forests as forests. This includes maintaining unmanaged forests in their natural state as well as more actively managed forests that are sustainably harvested to produce forest products while maintaining forest cover over time.
This is also appropriate from a carbon perspective. The size of any forest carbon sink is determined by the trees in the ground that sequester and store carbon minus carbon losses to the atmosphere when trees are removed from a forest through tree mortality and wildfires, or forests are permanently converted for farmland, mining, or development, and more. This includes the removal of trees from streets, parks, homes, and other properties in cities.
By combining actions that increase the number of trees (e.g., tree planting) with actions that prevent permanent forest loss, the 1t.org approach serves to ensure a strong net gain in carbon sequestration to slow climate change, while also prioritizing a variety of other environmental and social co-benefits of healthy ecosystems.
No, absolutely not. Healthy forest ecosystems, including the trees in them, are critical nature-based solutions to address climate change. In fact, science strongly suggests that we cannot successfully address climate change without a contribution from forests and other natural systems. But we must also rapidly and significantly decarbonize across all sectors. We must have reduced carbon emissions from sectors such as power and transportation to successfully slow climate change.
Investing in trees and forests alone are not enough to solve climate change. Rapid and significant emissions reductions can and must happen through the decarbonization of all key industry sectors (e.g., energy, transportation, heavy industry and the financial sector).
With that said, trees and forests do make a substantial contribution toward addressing climate change. U.S. forests and forest products currently capture and store 15% of U.S carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel combustion each year. Some research has suggested that U.S. forests have potential to capture nearly twice as much CO2, if we take actions like planting the right trees in the right places, using science-based best practices to manage forests, and keeping forests as forests instead of converting them to other uses.
Trees and forests are a critical nature-based solution to capturing greenhouse gas emissions that can be deployed today. Research led by The Nature Conservancy suggests the potential for U.S. forests to capture nearly twice as much if we responsibly plant more trees, utilize climate-smart practices to manage our forests and take other actions. One mature tree can capture an average of .62 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) over its lifetime. That is equivalent to the carbon emissions from driving one car 1,500 miles.
And we are not just talking about big forests in national parks and rural mountain communities. Trees in metropolitan areas and small towns in the U.S. are responsible for almost one-fifth of the country’s annual forest carbon sequestration and storage. These urban and community trees also shade buildings in the summer and block wind in the winter, which reduces the use of air conditioners and heaters—further avoiding carbon emissions. One study from the U.S. Forest Service (Nowak et al. 2017), found that these energy savings equated to a 7.2% reduction in national residential energy use for heating and cooling.
This ambitious target for the global restoration movement can be met through actions that conserve forests that already exist by slowing deforestation, help restore degraded and unhealthy forests, and lastly by growing the right tree species in the right places.
1.torg has been designed to serve the global trillion trees community. In support of this ambitious target, 1t.org aims to empower organizations and individuals to more effectively undertake needed actions so we can achieve the trillion-tree ambition.
In brief, these activities include:
- Permanent conservation of existing trees and forests (e.g., placing rural working forests under a permanent conservation easement; urban street tree protection through a city ordinance)
- Restoring and growing trees, including reforestation on degraded forestlands, tree-planting schemes on suitable agricultural land (such as agroforestry and silvopastoral strategies), and urban tree planting
- Supporting activities for trillion trees that enable the entire 1t.org community to build better systems to further catalyze progress, such as nursery development, technology tools, technical assistance, markets and innovation, educational programs, and workforce development
Everyone – no matter where you live or how young or old you are – can join the movement and get involved in 1t.org:
- By making financial contributions to support the entities making credible pledges.
- By your own personal actions to conserve and plant trees in your community.
- By encouraging your city council, employer, civic organization or other affiliated entities to submit a pledge to 1t.org.
- By participating in the Trillion Trees Challengevia UpLink, a digital platform to crowdsource top innovations for the Sustainable Development Goals. Join the global call for solutions, initiatives, fresh perspectives and ideas to help meet the Trillion Trees goal.
- By helping us raise awareness about the role of the 1t.org U.S. Chapter and the contribution it makes to advancing U.S. leadership in the global 1t.org platform. Follow us on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to amplify the message of re-greening our planet!
Corporations and NGOs/civil society groups who are ready to commit to conserve, restore and grow trees at a significant scale are encouraged to submit a pledge to 1t.org through our website. These same entities are also encouraged to help shape and supercharge the trillion trees movement and their own activities by joining our community of practice.
By advancing a portfolio of trillion trees activities, companies, NGOs, and civil society groups (e.g., youth groups, faith-based organizations) can pledge to help achieve the trillion tree goal by 2030. This includes helping to slow climate change while also investing in positive ecosystems with a plethora of environmental and social co-benefits.
Pledges can advance actions in diverse ways, including through directly implementing these activities on the ground, providing technical tools and support, contributing financial and other support, engaging employees and customers to support, engaging policymakers, and more. Further information on how companies, NGOs, and civil society groups can submit a pledge is available at us.1t.org/make-pledge/.
State and local government leadership has a substantial impact on conserving, restoring and growing trees all across the U.S., and must play a vital role in advancing the trillion trees goal. This will complement actions by the federal government and tribal governments.
State and local governments have long had a leadership role for America’s forests, including the essential role of state forestry agencies as the junction between federal programs and other implementers across the field of forestry. Mayors are playing an increasingly central role in advancing urban forestry with the growth of major urban forestry initiatives in cities across America. This leadership role range from direct implementation of forestry actions by state and local agencies to technical assistance, funding, regulations, and more.
Accordingly, we are strongly encouraging state and local governments to submit a pledge of these kinds of actions to conserve, restore and grow forests, including supporting actions. Further information on how governments can submit a pledge is available at https://us.1t.org/pledge/.