Trillion Tree Campaign

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Trillion Tree Campaign
Founded atGrimaldi Forum, Monaco
Official language
English, German, Spanish, French, Portuguese
Parent organization
Formerly called
Billion Tree Campaign

The Trillion Tree Campaign is a project which aims to plant one trillion trees worldwide.[1][2] It seeks to repopulate the world's trees and combat climate change as a nature-based solution. The project was launched at PlantAhead 2018 in Monaco by Plant-for-the-Planet.[3][4][5][6] In the fall of 2018, the project's official website was published in order to register, monitor, and donate trees to reforestation projects around the world.[6][7] The campaign is a continuation of the activities of the earlier Billion Tree Campaign, instigated by Wangari Maathai, who founded the Green Belt Movement in Africa in 1977.

As of 30 May 2021, 164 restoration projects participate in the campaign and 13.96 billion (1.396% of the goal) trees have been planted worldwide.[8]


Billion Tree Campaign[edit]

The Green Belt Movement began its activity in Africa in 1977, eventually planting more than 30 million trees.[9] The Billion Tree Campaign was inspired by Nobel Peace Prize laureate Wangari Maathai, founder of the Green Belt Movement. When an executive in the United States told Maathai their corporation was planning to plant a million trees, her response was: "That's great, but what we really need is to plant a billion trees."[10]

The project was launched in 2006 by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) under the patronage of Prince Albert II of Monaco[11] and the World Agroforestry Centre-ICRAF[12] as a response to the challenges of climate change, as well as to a wider array of sustainability challenges from water supply to biodiversity loss,[13][failed verification] and achieved the initial target of planting a billion trees in 2007.[14] The billionth tree, commonly known as an African olive, was planted in Ethiopia in November 2007.[15] In 2008, the campaign's objective was raised to 7 billion trees, a goal which was surpassed three months before its target of the climate change conference that was held in Copenhagen, Denmark, in December 2009.

The 2-billionth tree took root as part of the United Nation's World Food Programme agroforestry initiative. The campaign's target was then raised to seven billion trees.[16] In 2009, UNEP mobilized action across the globe through the "Twitter for Trees" campaign. UNEP pledged to plant one tree to feed into the Billion Tree Campaign for every follower who joined from 5 May 2009 to World Environment Day on 5 June 2009. The campaign was a success, with 10,300 people following the page by World Environment Day.[17]

The World Organization of the Scout Movement also planted trees under the campaign, in line with its mandate to study and protect nature across several countries.[18] United Nations Peacekeeping missions also joined the campaign and planted trees within their field missions in East Timor, Ivory Coast, Darfur, Lebanon, Haiti, Congo, and Liberia, among others.[19]

After the campaign[edit]

Felix Finkbeiner addressed the United Nations in a  speech to open the International Year of Forests 2011, saying: "It is now time that we work together. We combine our forces, old and young, rich and poor; and together, we can plant a trillion trees. We can start the Trillion Tree Campaign."[20] In December 2011, after more than 12 billion trees had been planted, UNEP formally handed management of the program to the youth-led not-for-profit Plant-for-the-Planet Foundation (an organisation that had been participating in the Billion Tree Campaign since 2007), based in Tutzing, Germany. Momentum has since continued, with 40,000 young ambassadors spreading the message in over 100 countries.[21]

In 2015, researcher Tom Crowther found that about 3 trillion trees exist in the world[22] and later it was also estimated that planting 1.2 trillion more trees would counteract 10 years of anthropogenic CO2 emissions.[23]

In 2017, Pakistan's Billion Tree Tsunami restored 350,000 hectares of forests.[24]

On 9 March 2018, the Trillion Tree Declaration was signed at the Grimaldi Forum in Monaco. Signatories include Prince Albert II of Monaco, Gyalwang Drukpa, Patricia Espinosa in collaboration with the WWF, WCS, and BirdLife International.

In September 2019, the Plant-for-the-Planet app was released under an open-source license. It allowed users to register planted trees or to plant trees by donating to different tree-planting organizations around the world.[25] The foundation does not take any commissions for donations made through the campaign.[26]

One Trillion Tree initiative[edit]

The 2020 World Economic Forum, held in Davos, announced the creation of the One Trillion Tree initiative platform for governments, businesses, and civil society to provide support to the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration (2020–2030), led by UNEP and FAO. Forum participant Donald Trump, then-president of the United States, announced that the government of the U.S. would commit to the initiative.[27]


By country[edit]


In the years 2011—2022, China restored more than 70 million hectares (700,000 km2) of forests. The nation committed to plant and conserve 70 billion trees by the year 2030 as part of the Trillion Tree Campaign.[29]


The United States has pledged to plant, grow, and restore around 51 billion trees by the year 2030. Currently, forests in the country absorb 15% of its carbon emissions. This can rise to 27% with responsible reforestation.[30]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "One trillion trees – uniting the world to save forests and climate". World Economic Forum. Retrieved 8 October 2020.
  2. ^ "This equates to an area bigger than the Amazon rainforest". 22 March 2024. Retrieved 12 April 2024.
  3. ^ "Trillion Trees campaign launched in Monaco by Felix Finkbeiner with support from Prince Albert". Monaco Reporter. 14 March 2018. Retrieved 5 December 2020.
  4. ^ "Plant Ahead: the Trillion Tree 'revolution' to save the Planet starts from the Principality of Monaco". HelloMonaco. 12 March 2018. Retrieved 5 December 2020.
  5. ^ "Felix Finkbeiner is trying for the trillion". Landscape News. 14 November 2018. Retrieved 5 December 2020.
  6. ^ a b "Rooting for Our Planet". Esri. 28 October 2018. Retrieved 5 December 2020.
  7. ^ Hub, IISD's SDG Knowledge. "Plant-for-the-Planet App Supports Trillion Tree Campaign | News | SDG Knowledge Hub | IISD". Retrieved 5 December 2020.
  8. ^ "Home". Trillion Tree Campaign – Together let's plant a Trillion Trees!. Retrieved 30 May 2021.
  9. ^ Simon N Gosling (2012) — Sustainability: The Geography Perspective, 13th page of chapter 6, University of Nottingham January 2013, — accessed 25 January 2020
  10. ^ "The Green Belt Movement".
  11. ^ "Billion Tree Campaign - Green Earth Appeal".
  12. ^ "Campaign to plant a billion trees within a year launched at UN climate change conference". UN News. 8 November 2006. Retrieved 5 December 2020.
  13. ^ "Commit to Action – Join the Billion Tree Campaign!". Archived from the original on 15 December 2014.
  14. ^ (content retrieved 13 June 2007 & 28 March 2016, source added 22 August 2013 (14:16)): link content unavailable - "Plant for the Planet"., (alternative source added): Achim Steiner (UNEP), in, Alister Doyle — More than 1 billion trees planted in 2007: U.N., Reuters 28 November 2007 - accessed 23 January 2020 (using "one billion trees in 2007 (achieved by November" with (google)
  15. ^ "UN Billion Tree Campaign".
  16. ^ "UNEP Billion Tree Campaign Hands Over to the Young People of the Plant-for-the-Planet Foundation".
  17. ^ (this source opens to 403 Forbidden - @ access made 24 January 2020)
  18. ^ "Your Planet Needs You! Unite to Combat Climate Change on World Environment Day". Archived from the original on 22 August 2013.
  19. ^ "Tree Planting Campaign Hits Four Billion Mark".
  20. ^ Felix Finkbeiner addresses United Nations with speech to open the International Year of Forests 2011, archived from the original on 21 December 2021, retrieved 22 January 2020
  21. ^ UNEP. (7 December 2011). "UNEP Billion Tree Campaign Hands Over to the Young People of the Plant-for-the-Planet Foundation." Accessed: 26 September 2013.
  22. ^ * (Crowther, Glick, Covey et al) "..approximately 3.04 trillion...", (Ehrenberg, using Crowther, Glick, Covey et al): " roughly 3 trillion trees on Earth"
    • T. W. Crowther, H. B. Glick, K. R. Covey, C. Bettigole, D. S. Maynard, S. M. Thomas, J. R. Smith, G. Hintler, M. C. Duguid, G. Amatulli, M.-N. Tuanmu, W. Jetz, C. Salas, C. Stam, D. Piotto, R. Tavani, S. Green, G. Bruce, S. J. Williams, S. K. Wiser, M. O. Huber, G. M. Hengeveld, G.-J. Nabuurs, E. Tikhonova, P. Borchardt, C.-F. Li, L. W. Powrie, M. Fischer, A. Hemp, J. Homeier, P. Cho, A. C. Vibrans, P. M. Umunay, S. L. Piao, C. W. Rowe, M. S. Ashton, P. R. Crane & M. A. Bradford (2015) — Mapping tree density at a global scale, Nature 525, 201–205 (2 September 2015) - accessed 23 January 2020
    • Crowther, Glick, Covey et al, Rachel Ehrenberg — Global count reaches 3 trillion trees, Nature 2 September 2015, doi:10.1038/nature.2015.18287 - re-access made 23 January 2020
  23. ^ * "1.2 trillion trees": Crowther, in, Tutton; "10 years of": Crowther, in report of Gabbatiss, sourced from e360 journal; "anthropogenic": Crowther in e360:
  24. ^ "Pakistan's Billion Tree Tsunami restores 350,000 hectares of forests and degraded land to surpass Bonn Challenge commitment". IUCN. 11 August 2017.
  25. ^ "Tree-planting programs turn to tech solutions to track effectiveness". Mongabay Environmental News. 22 November 2019. Retrieved 22 January 2020.
  26. ^ "Plant-for-the-Planet". Retrieved 22 January 2020.
  27. ^ *Samuels, Brett (21 January 2020). "Trump announces the US will join 1 trillion tree initiative". The Hill. Retrieved 21 January 2020.
  28. ^ Letters (21 February 2020). "Backing the trillion tree campaign to combat climate crisis | Letter". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 20 March 2020.
  29. ^ "China will aim to plant and conserve 70 billion trees by 2030 as part of the global tree movement". World Economic Forum. Retrieved 3 June 2022.
  30. ^ "Welcome to the U.S. trillion trees community". 1t org US. World Economic Forum. Retrieved 24 June 2022.


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