Did you know that an acre of trees takes the same amount of carbon out of the air that driving a car for 26,000 miles puts into it?
By planting trees, companies can actively offset emissions and engage with local communities, as well as improving the local diversity of areas nearby. And, by planting tree varieties, we can increase the native wildlife of Britain and reduce groundwater in areas that are unwooded.
Trees take out carbon dioxide from the air and turn it into oxygen. The Amazon rainforest has been called the “lungs of the earth” before, and it’s true. The oxygen that trees produce helps to create air quality that keeps humans and animals breathing properly.
By planting in scientifically mapped areas that don’t encroach on agricultural land or land designated for native planting already, such as DEFRA’s nectar flower mix scheme, we could increase forest density by 33.82% (this figure captures the regional mean taken from Crowther Lab).
These changes would exceed targets, surpassing what the Woodland Trust estimates (set at 19%) the UK would need to meet for effective carbon reduction.
The average established (fully grown) tree can offset approximately 21kg-25kg of carbon annually. This varies depending on the age of a tree, but the older it is, the more carbon dioxide a tree can take out of the atmosphere.
Floods and groundwater cause issues across the country. By increasing tree planting across the country, we can reduce groundwater and improve soil structure, all of which reduce erosion and property damage related to flooding.
As climate change increases the risk of extreme weather leading to floods, trees counteract two of these major problems.
From shrubs and fungi to beetles and animals, native trees help to improve local biodiversity. Native plants and trees have co-developed alongside other native species, and so they have evolved to be the best ‘host’ plant for them.
This isn’t just restricted to one type of tree either, such as oak or ash. Instead, a variety of native species creates a diverse eco-sphere. This in turn allows for species to increase their population and ensures a promising future for the UK’s wildlife.
Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is something that all companies are involved in. The UK Companies Act of 2006 states that:
“a director of a company must act in the way …and have regard for (sic).. the impact of the company’s operations on the community and the environment”
For example, if a company is considering a landscaping and grounds maintenance service, they should partner with professionals who enhance the local landscape, rather than interfere or disrupt the wildlife. The specialists at Grounds Care Group deliver all services efficiently, taking measures to lessen our impact on the environment wherever possible, by taking extra steps, such as using eco-friendly, sustainable materials.
Tree planting is a valuable way to demonstrate your Corporate Social Responsibility. Not only is it an opportunity for community engagement, but it also meets environmental needs. Tree planting can also be a great way to boost relationships with clients and suppliers as well as the company’s profile, through demonstrating environmental care.
Rory Butcher, British Touring Car Championship Racer with Toyota, wanted to offset his emissions from travelling around the country to races, as well as the races themselves. He got in contact with Adam Brindle, CEO and Founder of Grounds Care Group, himself an avid racing fan, to discuss a tree planting scheme at racetracks across the country.
Adam and Rory calculated that 72 established native British trees needed to be planted in order to offset the carbon emissions from travelling to and from Rory’s home in Kirkcaldy to circuits. Additionally, Rory committed to planting more trees for each podium place, one for a third place, two for second and three for first place.
The first of these trees were planted at the Toyota racetrack, and more have since been planted with Silverstone being the first major circuit to take part.
Regarding the tree planting scheme, Adam Brindle said:
“Tree planting is one of our key focusses at the Grounds Care Group, so when Rory Butcher mentioned to me that he wanted to find a way to offset his carbon footprint from travelling to race events, it seemed like the natural solution. Race circuits might be best known for the ribbon of Tarmac on which the cars compete, but they also have acres of green space ripe for planting trees, which in turn will help to preserve the land for generations to come.”
“Partnering with Rory has been amazing, and this is just the beginning of what we hope will be a long-lasting relationship. He has been so involved in this project and we are all hugely excited about embarking upon it with him. We would also like to thank Toyota GB and all the racetracks that have come on board so far.”
Tree planting is something that can’t be rushed. For these schemes to be effective, you need to choose local trees that will flourish in the right type of soil, as well as considering any risks in the local area and how a broader tree population will enhance the local landscape.
Partnering with a company like Grounds Care Group, who offer commercial tree planting services, ensures that not only are locally sourced trees from UK growers are used, but that trees are planted properly, and we can also provide ongoing maintenance contracts to ensure the trees are cared for year-round.
Get in touch today to discover how we can help.