Ten years ago, a search engine that used its profits to plant trees, restore landscapes and empower rural communities seemed far-fetched, but today Ecosia plants a new sapling every second across the planet and now users have reached the milestone of 100 million trees planted.
A 100 million trees are changing the world: a milestone and a beginning!
We live in a world where the science of climate change is still questioned, where action remains slow and climate justice is nowhere near completion. In a world that refuses to take common responsibility for common problems, Ecosia users are taking on that challenge, one tree at a time. These trees are not planted randomly; they are planted where they make most sense, for nature, for wildlife, and for people. These trees tackle the climate crisis by removing 1771 tonnes of CO2 every day. But they do so much more than that. 100 million trees is just the beginning. Thanks to Ecosia users, a greener, more just world is emerging.
100 million trees tackle the climate crisis by removing 1771 tonnes of CO2 every day
For the past eleven years, the search engine Ecosia has put most of the revenue from advertising on its website and app towards planting trees—and this month they planted their 100-millionth tree.
The German nonprofit, which became the first ‘B Corporation’ in that country because it was established for social good, has earned its founder Christian Kroll widespread praise—and one reason is that they claim to plant more native species than any other mass tree planting effort.
100 million trees tackle the climate crisis by removing 1771 tonnes of CO2 every day. But it means so much more than that.
- 100 million trees means habitats for endangered animals
- It means healthy rivers, more biodiversity, and fertile soil
- It means fruits, nuts, and oils for local communities
- It means more productive and resilient farms – and higher incomes
- It means more children at school
- It means that medical bills can be paid.
Ecosia reached this milestone thanks to a simple idea: they’re using their profits to make the world a greener, better place – not to make a single individual or collection of shareholders rich. Christian, Ecosia’s founder and CEO, made this commitment legally binding – and irreversible – in 2018.
That same year, they built their first solar plant. Today, they don’t just produce enough renewable energy to power all Ecosia searches – they produce twice as much. By being 200% renewable, they’re actively crowding out dirty energy from the grid. It’s their way of saying no to fossil fuels.
Making the world a greener, better place also means helping out in emergencies
When the Amazon fires were raging, hundreds of thousands started to use Ecosia, which helped them plant three million additional trees in Brazil. In January of this year, when Australia was devastated by bushfires, Ecosia used all global searches to restorenative rainforest. This May, when nurses and doctors faced enormous physical and mental pressure in the face of COVID-19, the non-profit started their first urban tree project, planting native species around more than ten hospitals to create healthier working environments.
On the company blog, it states:
‘Our ethics apply to our search engine, too. First, we made it completely privacy-focussed. After all, we’re interested in trees, not your data. Then, in 2019, we became the world’s first search engine to help you make greener decisions by providing additional information about your search results. For instance, we’re now placing a green leaf icon alongside the websites of planet-friendly organisations, and a fossil fuel plant icon next to the websites of the world’s biggest polluters.‘
And that, say Ecosia, is why 100 million trees are so much more than the CO2 they absorb:
‘Each of the 100 million trees is also a vote, a protest sign, a message that things can be done differently. Each brings us closer to a different future – one we can all look forward to. In this future, environmental and social justice is advanced, not repressed. Users searches have grown food, brought back rain, given women economic autonomy, and provided income for education.
‘In this future, the planet matters more than profit. Your privacy is protected, not for sale. Companies are transparent and pay their taxes. Renewable energy is the only acceptable option. In this future, “tech for good” is not just a slogan. In this future, we show up in emergencies, and help each other out.’
‘Thanks to millions of you joining the movement, this future isn’t just possible – it’s now emerging. Let’s keep building it. Let’s plant change.’
You can download the Google Chrome extension for Ecosia here.