Climate change: The US to plant 16 billion trees


US senator Cory Booker is set to propose the enactment of a new law to the country’s senate that will help address climate change, reduce carbon emissions and energy use, and create more sustainable jobs.

The Climate Stewardship Act will be presented in September and will enable the funding of programmes to plant 4.1 billion trees by 2030 and 16 billion by 2050.

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The Act is expected to create more than 200,000 forestry jobs in the first ten years.

The new trees will cover up to 64 million acres and will capture more than 13 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide by the end of the century – equivalent to more than two full years of the country’s current greenhouse gas emissions.

Some 400 million of these trees will be planted in urban cities to provide cooling effects on heatwaves and help urban residents to reduce their energy usage.

The trees are expected to save 800 urban lives, avoid 200,000 incidences of heat and respiratory illness, save up to 61.9TWh of energy and 41.7 trillion BTU of gas for heating and cooling.

The tree planting for urban residents is expected to result in more than $10 billion in health care and energy savings and further reduce emissions by more than 144 million metric tons.

The Act will result in the establishment of the Reforest America cost-share programme, the Urban Wood initiative, the Stewardship Corps and will provide funding to the US Forest Service and the Department of Interior.

More than 60 farmer, environmental, restoration, and forestry organisations endorse the Climate Stewardship Act of 2019. A full list of endorsing organisations can be found here.

For more information on the Climate Stewardship Act of 2019, please see the section-by-section here and the full text here.