Pledge by REI Co-op
One Million Tree Pledge to Restore Our ForestsTotal Trees Pledged: 1,000,000
Supporting actions: Policy and Advocacy,
For 82 years, REI has fought for life outdoors, prioritizing environmental stewardship and investing in our public lands. The climate crisis is the greatest existential threat facing the future of life outdoors, and as a community of people who have built our lives around the outdoors, REI Co-op and our members see the very real impacts of climate change all around us.
In recent years, wildfires in the West have burned so intensely across such vast swaths of land that many of our National Forests will not regenerate naturally for many decades, if at all. Without the combination of both proactive restoration and other measures to restore forest health, we risk losing the important benefits that forests provide.
These public lands are the cornerstone of our nation’s outdoor heritage. They simultaneously provide Americans co-benefits like clean water and fresh air, as well as open spaces to explore and enjoy the healing power of time spent outside. And restoring our impacted forest lands is one important step to increase the nation’s carbon sequestration capacity, as our National Forests are some of the most efficient natural systems for pulling carbon dioxide (CO2) out of the atmosphere.
Over the coming decade, we’re committed to planting at least 1 million trees across our National Forests in partnership with the National Forest Foundation (NFF). Through our reforestation work with the NFF, we will support an organization that is working on collaborative community and cross-boundary partnerships to implement projects that build resiliency and restore the health of our National Forests. These efforts are increasing the pace and scale of the work necessary to mitigate the impacts of the climate crisis and reduce the potential for severe fire on U.S. forests.
We will work with the NFF on an annual basis to select reforestation projects from a list of high-priority sites as determined by professional foresters. Planting will occur on sites adversely impacted by severe wildfire, pest, disease, blowdown, other natural disturbances. One potential project is restoring western coniferous forests in fire scars across the West to help jumpstart forest recovery and restore watersheds and wildlife habitat. Another might be restoring longleaf and shortleaf pine habitat in the southeastern U.S. as part of a large multi-state, multi-agency effort that will provide long-lasting carbon benefits, as the trees are long living species and highly resistant to many of the natural disturbances exacerbated by climate change (fire, drought, pests and disease).
The National Forest Foundation (NFF) is our primary partner. They in turn partner with the U.S. Forest Service. Periodically, the NFF may partner with other local or regional organizations (Longleaf Alliance, Green Forests Work and New Mexico University) on tree planting projects where relevant and efficient. The vast majority of NFF’s reforestation efforts are executed by the U.S. Forest Service and always occur on U.S. National Forests.
Policy support and advocacy to promote reforestation, active forest management and sustainable forestry.
The National Forest Foundation is proud to partner with the U.S. Forest Service, the most advanced forest management agency in the world. Their data and science based approach is proven for restoring forests in need and maintaining forest health.