Posted by: Frank Eakin | July 23, 2020

Plant a trillion trees? Yes, but get a renewable energy plan.

Planting trees is among the most noncontroversial methods of protecting the planet from climate disruption. If a massive number of trees were planted worldwide, there would be practically no political sacrifices required for it – no transition from fossil fuels, no need for energy conservation, and no investment needed for renewable sources of power. But a trillion trees will be less impactful than a renewable energy plan for every home in the near term.

Check out a sampling of the low-cost green energy rates of Gexa Energy, Green Mountain Energy and Pulse Power in Texas. Then read on.

Renewable Energy Rates and Plans in Texas

Average Monthly Usage
PROVIDERS/PLANS 500
kWh
1000
kWh
2000
kWh
Contract
Term
Rate
Type
Cancel
Fee
Renewable
Content
GEXA PLANS
Gexa Saver Supreme 24 16.2¢ 7.4¢ 11.4¢ 24 Months Fixed $295.00 100%
Gexa Saver Premium 24 14.3¢ 13.9¢ 8.8¢ 24 Months Fixed $295.00 100%
Gexa Saver Freedom 36 13.6¢ 13.2¢ 13.1¢ 36 Months Fixed $295.00 100%
Gexa Saver Freedom 12 12.8¢ 12.4¢ 12.3¢ 12 Months Fixed $150.00 100%
Gexa Superb Saver 12 18.4¢ 14.5¢ 7.6¢ 12 Months Fixed $150.00 100%
Gexa Saver Deluxe 12 16.0¢ 5.6¢ 10.5¢ 12 Months Fixed $150.00 100%
Gexa Saver Supreme 12 15.6¢ 6.8¢ 10.9¢ 12 Months Fixed $150.00 100%
Gexa Saver 12 17.0¢ 7.2¢ 11.8¢ 12 Months Fixed $150.00 100%
Gexa Saver Premium 12 13.8¢ 13.4¢ 8.3¢ 12 Months Fixed $150.00 100%
GREEN MOUNTAIN PLANS
Pollution Free e-Plus 24 Preferred 11.4¢ 11¢ 10.8¢ 24 Months Fixed $200 0%
Pollution Free e-Plus 12 Preferred 11.5¢ 11.1¢ 10.9¢ 12 Months Fixed $150 0%
Pollution Free e-Plus 36 Preferred 11.3¢ 10.9¢ 10.7¢ 36 Months Fixed $250 0%
PULSE POWER PLANS
Texas Fixed 36 10.8¢ 10.3¢ 10¢ 36 Months Fixed $20 19%
Texas Saver 12 16.1¢ 6.2¢ 10.8¢ 12 Months BillCredit $125 19%
Texas Saver 36 16.6¢ 6.7¢ 11.3¢ 36 Months BillCredit $125 19%
Texas Fixed 12 11.1¢ 10.6¢ 10.3¢ 12 Months Fixed $20 19%
Texas Green 36 11.1¢ 10.6¢ 10.3¢ 36 Months Fixed $20 100%
Texas Green 12 11.3¢ 10.8¢ 10.5¢ 12 Months Fixed $20 100%
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Felix Finkbeiner is the founder of Plant for the Planet, which is a tree-planting organization taking the responsibility of planting new trees across the continents. The organization inherited an enormous tree-planting program which was renamed the Trillion Tree Campaign, with Dr. Thomas Crowther as the Chief Scientific Advisor.

Crowther, an ETH Zurich Ecologist who is also the thesis advisor to Finkbeiner, commented, “We’ve been astonished to find that it is up there with all the best climate change solutions.”  Crowther noted, however, that the full benefits of planting such a quantity of trees won’t be seen for at least 100 years, which is the time taken for the full maturity of new saplings to be planted over the period. He said that it could be a real disaster if tree planting is only used as an excuse for industries to avoid cutting CO2 greenhouse gas emissions and for consumers to delay switching to renewable energy and conserving energy.

Greta Thunberg, the 17-year old climate activist, has pointed out that that it is critical for countries, consumers and industries to stop emitting CO2 in order to control climate change. It is crucial to switch to solar, wind and other renewable sources of energy before it’s too late. States like Texas have utilized sources like the wind and sun to produce renewable energy at affordable electricity rates.

So yes, plant trees… but if you wish to make a significant impact in the next decade take 10 minutes or less and enroll in a 100% renewable energy plan from one of the best light companies in Texas. You’ll find vetted green energy plans from trustworthy brands on Home Energy Club that actually cost less than fossil-sourced plans, so it’s an easy choice. Why pay more to pollute, right?

Other tree planting campaigns to the rescue of our planet

Tree planting campaigns can bring real progress towards climate change control over time. The researchers at ETH Zurich have said that worldwide reforestation with 1.2 trillion trees could reduce atmospheric carbon by almost 25 percent.

A Nobel Peace Prize was given to Wangari Maathai, a Kenyan woman who directed a campaign to plant 30 million trees in Africa. The YouTube broadcaster Jimmy Donaldson, known as Mr. Beast by his millions of young viewers, launched a campaign to raise $20 million to plant 20 million trees. Billionaire Elon Musk donated $1 million and temporarily changed his Twitter handle to “Treelon”. Ethiopia set a new world record for the most number of trees planted in a day when 23 million people planted 350 million trees in a day.

Healthy forests are the best sinks for carbon. The simple science behind the process is the reaction of photosynthesis in leaves which require carbon dioxide. The greenhouse gases in the environment are trapped by trees and turned into energy, which creates new leaves, longer stems and therefore additional capacity to lock away carbon.

Scientists have recognized the powerful capacity of trees as natural carbon-sucking machines, making them a sustainable weapon in the battle against climate change. Millions of dollars have been donated in support of these campaigns. Nonetheless, that is not where the struggle stops. The bottom line is that we must remove carbon from the electrical grid and replace carbon-based fuels with green-sourced energy for use in transportation.

How effective is tree-planting in your neighborhood?

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, American vegetation absorbed enough carbon dioxide to cancel out 11 percent of the nation’s emissions in 2017. One must note that all trees don’t have the same capacity of absorbing carbon dioxide. Therefore, the right species should be planted and grown to full maturity when it comes to climate change. Moreover, the right location is also important. The forests in high latitudes do not have the same carbon-fighting capacity as the trees in tropics. They can even cause the Earth’s surface to grow darker, absorbing more heat. The forests in tropics tend to get covered by clouds that reflect sunlight and hence, cool the planet.

Various reforestation projects and studies have proven that in terms of global-warming control, forests in the temperate regions and higher latitudes won’t be as effective as the forests of the tropics. Nonetheless, forests are environmentally valuable resources for a ton of ecological reasons and planting trees should be constantly encouraged in the long run.

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