This holiday season, as we gather with our families and keep in mind all of the things that we are thankful for, we think it’s important to keep in mind all of the various benefits forests provide for our lives and our planet, and why it’s important to keep their protection at the front of our thoughts.
1. Wildlife depends on forests for survival.
One acre of forest can be home to more than 1,000 different species.
2. Forests filter the water we use.
One mature tree can capture and filter more than 36,000 gallons of water per year.
3. Trees are increasingly being turned to as flood-control solutions.
Trees are being planted in France, England, India, China and many other countries around the world in efforts to lessen the impacts of super-floods.
4. Trees reduce our air conditioning costs.
Trees providing shade can reduce energy costs of AC by up to 50 percent and can cool the area surrounding the tree by up to nine degrees Fahrenheit.
5. Trees are fun!
More than 130,000 miles of hiking trails in the U.S. are open to the public through the U.S. Forest Service.
6. Forests help offset the environmental impact of cars.
In one year, an acre of forest can absorb twice the CO2 produced by the average car’s annual mileage.
7. Trees contribute to your success.
Students with trees outside school windows have higher test scores and graduation rates after controlling for other factors.
8. Forests are good for your health.
Having more trees in your area is shown to improve heart disease, stroke, diabetes, obesity and many other health issues.
9. Trees help you breathe.
Trees are instrumental in removing particulate matters (like smog) from the air in urban areas. Not to mention they produce the oxygen you breathe!
10. Trees bring us closer to wildlife.
The natural visual screening of a trail in a wooded area tends to make most wildlife feel safer around humans than they would in open terrain.