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Environment

This Site Helps You Plant a Tree Every Time Trump Tweets Something Wrong About Climate Change

Why Global Citizens Should Care
Conserving forests can get the world 30% of the way toward achieving the Paris climate agreement, which the United Nations’ Global Goals call on countries to follow. You can take action on this issue here.

For anyone frustrated with US President Donald Trump’s approach to climate change, the environmental nonprofit Treepex created a digital release valve.

A new program called Treespond features some of Trump’s most infamous anti-environmental tweets and instead of the usual options for responding, liking, and retweeting, people can choose to “Treespond” by paying for trees to be planted.

Each tweet has a set number of trees assigned to it for people to buy, and it’s set up like a game. Treepex encourages people to “eliminate every ignorant quote about environmental issues by planting across national forests of California devastated by wildfire.”

Take Action: Ensure All Communities Can Withstand Climate Disaster

The purpose of Treespond is to productively channel people’s anger into helping the planet, according to Mashable.

Other groups, including “Trump Forest,” are also planting trees in response to Trump’s actions, but Treespond brings an element of fun to the process.

"It's normal to get angry when people with power spread false information about a problem that needs urgent attention, their words can do real damage," Bacho Khachidze, Treepex's cofounder, told Mashable. "But we wanted to provide people with something actionable they could do that wasn't, like, screaming back."

Screen Shot 2018-07-30 at 12.25.17 PM.pngScreenshot of Treespond

Since taking office, the Trump administration has taken various steps to reverse US environmental progress, including pulling out of the Paris climate change, rolling back dozens of key regulations, and opening up offshore waters to oil drilling, among various other actions.

This is happening against a backdrop of accelerating environmental changes. The oceans are heating up and acidifying, forest fires are becoming more intense and longer lasting, heat waves are becoming more extreme, and monsoons and hurricanes are becoming more powerful.

Read More: 87% of the World’s Oceans Are Dying: Report

Planting trees is not enough to counteract the corrosive effect of greenhouse gas emissions, but it can be part of a broader solution that includes transitioning to renewable energy, making infrastructure more efficient, and curbing industrial pollution.

Protecting the world’s forests is an enormous challenge in and of itself. The world lost 40 football fields worth of trees every minute in 2017.

If countries instead added that many trees per minute to the world then a chain reaction of environmental regeneration would occur.

Read More: Humanity Is About to Use Up More Resources Than the Earth Can Regenerate

Trees play an important role in cleaning air, water, and soil, providing food, fostering biodiversity, and much more. Prioritizing forest conservation could achieve 30% of the Paris climate agreement, according to the World Resources Institute.

By converting Trump’s anti-environmental statements into trees, Treepex is able to boost morale among environmental advocates and build momentum for a future time when the US once again adheres to the Paris climate agreement.